at risk

Drunk Nihilistic Poet

I had to be prepared for anything,
I knew well my predicament
of being the embodiment of some rebellion
without a cause, or possibly,
a very vague one,
I was set to play this role
till the curtain of my life
would set and finally be able to rest
from such a demanding performance;
nonetheless, I had to be prepared for anything
this urgency to be sporadic, risky and insane
would take me tonight into another dark alley
another hidden hour in the middle of the night,
wherever I would end, I had to be ready
since I had no choice
but to follow through with the command
of fate,
even while I see the strings over my head
puppeteering me to go here or do that
I cannot resist
for the strength of the strings is greater
than my awareness of them,
so I bid farewell
I leave into the end of the night,
as you could say,
to the disfigured events of nighttime
the ghastly stars
the only witnesses
to my rampant
behavior.

 


contemporary poetry

Turbulent Purple

 

 

The fiery afternoon had transformed itself into a turbulent purple. How else could I describe it? It had no other name than Turbulent Purple. I am by blind necessity bound to call it by that denomination, I am a slave to that ambiguous name. Leaping in and out the oblivious space of mind, short and poetically vague sensations occupied most of my purposeless time. Without explanation or warning I could read in the papyrus of thoughts scriptures such as these:

           
            Centuries of dancing shadows
            Has the strong wind of fate
            Extinguished Man´s recurrent dream?
 
Ah! From where do all these voices arise but from the nocturnal?
 
How senseless it is to reveal in words the impenetrable mystery of the mind, how lame an attempt to reproduce the wilderness of wonder. The afternoon had turned into a Turbulent Purple and I became sure the existence of written language had no purpose but to express the shock of our encounter with reality — it could never explain a thing. So, without regret I had survived numberless fears of imminent death so I could experience once more the unnatural beauty of nature.
 
Ha! So many years organizing my thoughts so that in my final despair I found every cell in my body to have a life of its own and my thoughts faithful pilgrims in the inhospitable lands of paradox. Therefore I studied my body with care as if it were an extraterrestrial lump of matter and completely gave up the hope of a systematical account of human experience. Then I focused again on the sky and the world was still a turbulent purple. It was not long after this that for the first time I started doubting of the ancient and perennial pillars of art. It seemed to me that if all things go wrong the last desperate redemption would come through art — art had a special bond with the essence of all experience, it embraces the whole multitude of feeling and all genre of action and yet it transcends them all — or so I thought.
 
“Life and death for art” would have been my motto two years ago. But in my rebellion against all dogma the mutiny of doubts turned against my ideals and the sky of my convictions became turbulent — perhaps purple to a spectator of my consciousness. If myths, religions, wars, slavery, races, countries, continents, suns, and galaxies all have an allotted time, art surely is as ephemeral as the rest. Alone and destitute I stood while the echo of a turbulent purple sunset reverberated in the coffins of memory. At last I got rid off the most obdurate preoccupation, second only to death — namely, life no longer lived for art, love, money, fame, joy or by instinct alone; it seems likely to be here for no reason in particular. One last thing remains certain:
 
               Returning from the underground
               Reflections in echoes
               From the pit of despair
               The fountain of wonder
               The irony of this paradox
               From the art of Nature
               Conceived the death of Art
               A dying fire. . .
                       Turbulent Purple
                          turbulent purple

A prospect of madness

 

Would you call me mad if I can confess of a certainty in the prospect of the future, even when I fully acknowledge that the vicissitudes of Time can easily outsmart the most rigorous mathematical prediction; yes I was sure that in ten years’ time I would be looking back to this very same day – today – as the fantasy of a naïve child’s imagination that mistook the nature of reality for that of a game: haven’t I erred in my conviction that life is best lived through the transformation of its contents into those poetic representations that plunge me into an ecstatic state of mind, in other words, in trying to grasp life by its tail by scrutinizing every tottering thread of Time had I not missed the meaning of reality by inspecting it too minutely, too unsparingly as to leave out of the range of my investigations the global experience of existence?

I saw in that Delphic vision a day when all these conglomerates of experience that surround me today would be no more than the debris of a vanished Past, a trivial irony that would have no more power to excite my cynical laughter. That day will come when I rent a paltry hotel room in Belgrade, killing my time with a lousy inexpensive hooker and when night comes I will stare despairingly at the ceiling wondering if abandoning my youthful delusions was a wise choice, since by then I would have purged myself of any prospect in the road of human creativity and would be living in the pulsation of every naked minute, suffering like every other human being in the claws of the beast of existence. And every so often I would glimpse outside my window to see a crumbling civilization and I shall utter words such as these:

 

Withered petals gliding down
Breaking from their cone
Into scattered puddles in the street
Let each petal leave my rose
Each desire run away
All sorrow, regret and concern
Vanish below –
What is it to me that we must die
Why should I carry the burden
Of Fate’s indifference to us?