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Douglas Luman

Weekend in Thanatosis

The Cantiphon

Weekend in Thanatosis

“That guy's gotta stop...he'll see us.”
Last words of James Dean
Live Fast, Die Young
L. Weisel Fracella

Drive north
                         Blackwell's Corner
                                    to find me and James Dean
                                                 speeding through school zones
                                                            in a silver Porsche 550,
                                                                         giant killer coupe,
                                                                                    two-body trunk.

No locals
           even 'round Paso Robles
                         know the place,
                                    but September nights
                                                 close your eyes or you'll miss the exit.
                                                            Turn hard right.

           end over
                                    you are air-born,
                                                 pilot of the autodrome.
                                                            At twilight-time, see city lines

Trust James,
           only he knows the way.
                         He whispers
                                    open your eyes, Speed Racer,
                                                 at mach-five,
                                                            we'll survive;
                                                                         see the city lights
                                                                                    others mistake for starry skies?


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The Cantiphon

The Tempest, Act III, Sc. II


Where have my dreams gone?

You have lost sixth sense of vision,

None could have known
what would come replacing canary with kingfisher
of the coal mine:

black lung
black heart,
blackened eyes.


eyes, aye, eyes
only eyes.

Clouds will open, show riches.
Make the world blind.


Who is this mockingbird,
fisher-of-men playing
at John the Baptist?

Fish-man, sense-assassin
game hunter from the high perch
threading hook with eye-candy bait.

No such Pacific Prophet here,
this Bishop of Bituminous
this coal-fired soul.


Black Lung,
Black Heart


eyes, aye, eyes
only eyes.

Clouds will open, show riches.
Make the world blind.



eyes, aye, eyes
only eyes.

Render up obscene riches.
You've made the world blind.


Go forth, in prospero,
progeny of progeny,
quarter-godhead of Setebos,

people the world with Calibans
a thousand twanging twanging instruments
crying to dream again.

Clouds will open, show riches.
Make the world mine.


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Douglas Luman is a book artist currently pursuing an MFA at the University of Central Arkansas where he is an Assistant Editor for the Toad Suck Review. He is also the Book Reviews Editor for the Found Poetry Review. Follow him on Twitter: @douglasjluman

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