Wednesday, February 12, 2014

1492 or 1942 or 2194; same old thing  

The sun comes up on this guy’s back, and you can tell, 
looking over his shoulder, and by the way he holds his sextant, 
that it’s Christopher Columbus. Also you can tell, 
by the cramped way he holds his body, how long he’s 
been out on the ocean without any sex. And yet ... 

... on the endless blue there’s a creaming white line up ahead, 
a tree and a man up on top of it; LAND! 

Also, in this otherwise empty land, there’s a white and glass house of some sort, 
and a long line - maybe the entire population of this New Land - lined up to it. 

The man falls from the top of the tree; the line of people 
looking down, at their hands
don’t notice. 
Striking sand, first by bow then by boot,
Columbus walks up the sand to help the man to his feet, 
who is muttering: fucking 'ell… fucking 'ell … 

“Ponce?” asks Chris. 
“Wot?” says the man rubbing his head. 
“Ponce? De Leon?” 
“Naw. Keith. Richards. Fucking 'ell, that bloody 'urt!” 
“And they didn’t even notice. Good morning, I’m Christopher Columbus. What are they in line for, Richards?” 
“New Smartphone. That’s the Apple Store.”

Chris looks at Keith with his calculating sextant face.

“Isn’t it too early for that to be around?”

Keith laughs long coughs longer.

“ 's why there in line, right?” 
“No I meant ... never mind.”

The two men watch the line down the golden beach. 
Looking up, Columbus sees seagulls like peaceful white sails 
on the blue sky; he looks at Richards. 

“Isn’t there a war they should line up and protest instead?”
“Or at least queuing for a Beatles concert, right mate, I hear ya.”
“Y’know, Richards, it’s like I was saying Saturday night 
on the Santa Maria: the world isn’t flat or round ...”
“Yeah man, it’s square. I smell your coffee brewin’, Columbus!”

Keith laughs long coughs longer. 

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