This Side of Burlesque

And then came the day
when he realized he was free,
always had been
to enjoy the abstracted
stage-play of his thoughts
and their formations,
something of an idiot’s delight,
same as the scabbed-glass opera
of the world without,
its tragedies and follies
swaddled in petticoats
of burlesque
(the people burning—
Take it off, take it off)
how interesting it all was,
how thoroughly enjoyable
it was to be alive,
 a mortal gob of wax engaged
to the briefest of candle-flickers
in the ceremonial scheme of dark and light,
how much he would miss himself—
who he was, who he was not—
when he was gone,
when his persona had melted
into a puddle of anonymous molecules
that had to be on their merry, migrating way
(goodbye vagabond molecules!)
while his very last thoughts
might plants the seeds
for a brand-new play
starring god knows who
in some crumbling, time-clipped tenement
of Eternity
where, AT PRESENT,
was an immutable law
and not just a parenthetical
stage direction.

About John Biscello

Originally from Brooklyn, NY, writer, poet, spoken word performer, and playwright, John Biscello now lives in Taos, New Mexico. He is the author of three novels: Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale, Raking the Dust, and Nocturne Variations, and a collection of stories, Freeze Tag. His fiction and poetry has appeared in: Art Times, nthposition, The Wanderlust Review, Ophelia Street, Caper, Polyphony, Dilate, Militant Roger, Chokecherries, Farmhouse, BENT, The 555 Collective, Instigator, Brass Sopaipilla, The Iconoclast, Adobe Walls, Kansas City Voices, and the Tishman Review. His blog--Notes of an Urban Stray--can be read at Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale was named Underground Book Reviews 2014 Book of the Year.
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