A few humourous rhymes featuring mythic, alchemical, pathological and Gnostic themes...
THE RIND OF THE ANCIENT DEATHMELON
(with apologies to S. T. Coleridge)
Deathmelons seek celestial swine
abroad on their jaunty ways.
Deathmelons know how to sigh and pine
and roll on their rinds and pray.
Away, ye horrid seeds of despair!
Come, come o juices of glee!
Deathmelons - band together and fight
or end up on the table for tea. . . .
About and about the Deathmelons shout
and bounce like Platonic spheres,
and merging in consummation devout
mingle their sweet-tasting tears,
Giving their lives that we might be filled
and replenished with vitamin C,
yielding to knives, unafraid to be killed -
all hail, noble melons - to Sea!
Bobbing along like huge, rotund corks
Deathmelons venture from land,
dodging the waves with determined aim -
behold now the fruitful band!
They seek the lands where bananas roam
and the Owl and the Pussycat's boat,
a punnet of strawberries greets them off shore
as they spin on their axes and float -
Float like small planets in watery space
round a Sun (played by Honeydew),
Paddy (the Irish one) starts a race
entered by only a few.
Two avocadoes shout 'Come on!'
to the swift Deathmelons that lead,
while another big melon explodes with joy
scattering everywhere seed.
In dark, rich soil some seeds take root
while the Deathmelons rot and decay.
The alchemical cycle of Nature burns
as death turns to life again.
Come spring, small melons appear in scores
as their flowers wither and fade,
soon, warily testing the waters once more,
they up to their mid-rinds wade.
Come sunset, the Deathmelons take to sea
in solemn and single file,
seeking the land of the Paradise Fruit
they travel for many a mile.
In sight of land the adventuresome band
espy an old melon ahead,
in thought suspended as though he pretended
to be like a Deathmelon, dead.
Cautious, the Deathmelons then draw near
lured by the spell of his age,
entranced, they can but choose to hear
one so like a sea-worn sage.
The old Deathmelon begins his tale:
'There was a grape,' quoth he.
'Be off! Unhand us, grey-skinn'd gourd
and bob back out to sea!'
The Ancient Deathmelon turns to flee
with a manic and mournful wail;
the Deathmelons are spared the fate
of hearing his long, sad tale.
The Ancient Deathmelon finds at last
an old coconut floating alone,
he tells her his tale - love doth prevail!
Now they search for an island home.
Meanwhile, the Deathmelons, wayfarers all,
continue their errant quest,
now seeking the Melon-Grail Castle, may
they be with its Vision blest!
Deathmelons ache with longings that surge,
their pulpy hearts know no rest,
but palpitate to both ditty and dirge
and hail all Adventure with zest.
Farewell to thee, Ancient Deathmelon,
farewell to thy coconut wife!
Farewell all ye journeying Deathmelons
and may all your deaths drown into Life!
O fret not after knowledge - I have none. . . .
The Deathmelon rolled its blind rind-spots to Heaven:
'I see it all clearly,' it said,
and giving a squish of self-comforting glee
rolled back to its dark soil bed.
What joys, what horrors, what wonders it knew
in its God-like stance mute, yet invincible,
what terrors passed by it, so quiet and round
in its spherical trance, unconvincible.
For it needed no knowledge, its knowledge no need
expressed, for its life simply was,
it said 'Wonky Tiddle' to itself
(overheard by the lettuce, Coz).
It was a Deathmelon and wanted to be
no other creature or fruit,
for what did it need but the sky and the land
and the light and the water to boot?
It was its own point and circumference too,
its nothingness all that it had,
for its Negative Capability seemed
to most others quite foolish or mad.
But it knew what all other fruit-vegie things know
and it saw what potato eyes see,
how the vine deep in anchoring soil must lie
that Deathmelons may roam about free.
The Deathmelon, peaceful and undisturbed,
snuggles down in the soil to sleep
till the Sea beckons once again
and it sets its heart on the briny deep.
For therein is the greatest treasure of all -
the huge Pearl like a Deathmelon shaped,
and the rickety old wooden garden fence
is transformed to the Pearly Gate
as the Deathmelon dreams
while the pattering rain falls down soft
like a meteor shower
and the Deathmelon wakes 'neath a thin slice of Moon
in a nothing and everything hour.
It stretches its rind, contented, looks up
where beyond the leaf silhouettes, free,
the Moon like a ripening pearl sails on
as the Deathmelon dreams of the Sea.
Now the rain-patter stops
like the crackle of fire retired to an emberous glow,
and the Deathmelon, winsome and joyfully sad,
seeks no other existence to know.
For it knows that it knows not,
it sees its own Point -
its invisible focus of Sight,
and it wraps the soil darkness about itself
and stares up at the stars of the night.
For it is a Deathmelon, it ebbs and it flows
rolled about by the tides of Desire,
and the end of its longing is, Sun and Moon-like
to rise like a round Phoenix from Fire.
Behold a penultimate desecron
runs severed through the gate,
then comes a delugiant whiskatron
with four instead of eight.
'A very brisk quaternity,' thought I
with puzzled mind.
'Why craves it my fraternity, as if
I am its kind?'
It stared at me with brittle gaze
from slivered glass of eye,
then answered in a harmony
of voices by and by:
'I knew the facts, I swung the axe
and cut myself in twain, and then
with my remaining strength
I swung twice more again,
but now I have not skill nor mind
to cut in pieces more
my already divided self -
I'll subdivide no more!'
The gate still swung its hinges with
the passing of those forms, a penduluma
of wavering in two directions torn.
And just when it had settled down
as if to go to sleep,
A nebulous exantiphron barged through on seven feet.
c. 1998 Deathmelon Poetry, Inc.
by Percevalia D. Melomorte
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Last Updated: 31 Aug 98