Daily Postings
Literature : Word Choice


Ben Pease, Chateau Wichman XIX. Courtesy of the artist.

From Chateau Wichman

Darkness embraced The Wichman
	       a black nylon flesh
covered his own

the symbiote suit 
	             however maliciously it fed off 
             Spiderman’s adrenaline when he slept
at least provided the webslinger
      breathability and a fashionable wardrobe   

not so for the Wichman
	        his sauna suit kept him 
in the dark
	           a claustrophobic but all too familiar 
lack of light maintained itself for some time 

just as impatient as The Wichman 
	         the darkness began expanding  
as one imagines pasta unfolding 
			                           from a pasta machine

luckily for The Wichman’s sanity
	       the darkness didn’t go on for eternity 
     or make The Wichman feel like a ribosome
		                      in the first cellular organism 
		                          to make its own food

thanks to a vague returning 
	         omnipotence
	         The Wichman knew 
         he was on a battlefield
near the Ardennes Mountains		
	       hunkered down
in a foxhole wriggling his toes
	       to get a little feeling back	 
he hugged his rifle tight
	       kicked his feet up 
and right where his boot touched 
			                      the edge of his 
		                        depressed shelter	
a cigarette flared up a few miles off

The Wichman got on his radio about to say 
	       Who The Fuck Ignored Light Discipline?
but it was too late
 
the batteries of German howitzers blasted
            The Wichman’s eardrums
and shook the ground

The Wichman tried to hum 
         that line from the 1812 Overture
	         between blasts
but they came too quickly

instead of an explosion burnishing the night sky
	       the flicker of light from the cigarette intensified

the howitzers’ salvo boomed 
	       like an Atlas-sized luggage cart rolling
over the indents of a titanic walkway 


the shells continued their bombardment
          at the same precise location 
the bombastic light in a shrapnel formation 
          hurtled toward The Wichman

		          each fragment 
	          upon entering The Wichman
         made him flinch
 though he felt not pain
	         but the faint steadily increasing
motion of a vortex seizing upon him

tourbillion the French word for whirlwind
	       occurred to The Wichman then
the battle thundered on moving inward
		               not dispensing injury
but strengthening The Wichman 
	            each blow eradicating
what notions of the world 
		                  he once held

The Wichman glowed like Han Solo 
	        coming out of carbonite 
soldiers from both sides walked side by side
	        speaking in a language 
he knew he nor anyone else

		              could understand

he reached and called out for them
	         to help him

they came and peered into the vortex 
         twirling from the center of his chest 
                   and were consumed by it 

	        the howitzers	 the trees 
the mountains     the entire landscape 
The Katamarian Wichman in god mode 
	        consumed whole countries 
whole continents whole worlds 
	        whirling within him 

The Wichman floated in a river of dead trees 
the dead trees swirled around him and once more 
		                 put on the garment of life

The Wichman reunited with everything of this universe
	       above it beyond it and yet below it less than it

The Tourbillion Wichman spinning amid 10,000 others
	       they spun around him he around them
       no center every point a center 
 The Wichman a boy a beast a girl a liquid bird
	       a fiery sea not anything not nothing
he twirled over every space he could not be found
      beyond contentment and agitation  
   beyond male and female
          beyond joy and sorrow
             beyond Wich and Man
     beyond rock ’n roll and silence
            beyond love and melancholy
         beyond exploration and conquest
     beyond punting squads and quarterback sneaks 
           beyond waxing and waning 
            beyond iron and spice
     beyond bobble heads and fleur-de-lis
          beyond feint-within-a-feint and attack outright  
       beyond recoiling bark and lead-tipped arrows
           beyond unwanted fame and undeserved obscurity
         The Wichman spun

Ben Pease is a poet and visual artist with degrees from Emerson College and Columbia University. He hails from Ludlow, Massachusetts, the setting for his next book, Fugitives of Speech. He is an assistant professor at ASA College in New York City. A chapbook with selections from Chateau Wichman, Wichman Cometh, is available from Monk Books.

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