Saturday, February 27, 2016

Alan Catlin- Three Poems

                                                                       Big Foot

What can you say about Big Foot
that hasn’t already been said?
He’s like this weird character
from an Edgar Allan Poe novel
no one ever reads, set in a frozen
wasteland inhabited by all these
previously unknown, hostile creatures
that, once sighted, seem to disappear
into the subconscious where they
refuse to leave. And you’d be hostile
too if all these alien invaders arrived
at the shores of your homeland
in tall ships and started planting
flags and claiming shit, as if it were
their own, as if anyone could just
land grab it in the first place.
White Man’s Burden the invaders
would say once the natives got rowdy
and they had to use superior force to
quiet things down.  You could look up
White Man’s Burden and you can see
how it could be use to justify just about
anything and that  most of the ills of
the last few centuries can be traced
directly back to this notion. Anyway,
around now readers are saying, ”But
Edgar Allan didn’t write any novels.”
And author can say, “Oh, yes he did.
You can look that up too.” Not that
Poe actually mentions Big Foot but
he did creatures exactly like them,
kissing cousins you might say.  Other
kissing cousins are The Black Feet
who appear in many Westerns, certainly
in movies, so I presume in novels also.
Those suckers were always tossing
big ass boulders, no doubt made of
painted paper of some kind, in those
black and white movies popular way
back when.  They must have been as
strong as Big Foot is reputed to be.
No doubt they are still tossing stuff
about like nobody’s business. Look out below!

            Crab Monsters

Remember all those black and white
movies in the 50’s?  The ones that
came out in the wake of the atomic
bomb, fear of the red menace,
like every two weeks with a different
giant something: Attack of the 100 Foot
Woman, giant ants, shrews, cats
(though, as I recall, in that one, they
shrank the people so the cat just
seemed huge but it amounts to the
same thing). No giant dogs, though.
I wonder why? Maybe the shrews got them?
That was a joke, son. Anyway, those giant
crabs were scary, man: a bunch if dudes
(scientists) and dudettes (assistants)
in this deteriorating island ( kind of a
locked room mystery only outdoors
and the room keeps getting smaller…)
all these guys and gals getting chomped
to death by these hordes of ravenous
land crabs.  Who really knew how they
got this big other than it had to do with
radiation, and there was always some
flimsy plot twist/ weak point that led
to their demise.  All of it completely
ridiculous but scary while it lasted.
The whole bad scene should have been
enough to make all the real scientists
stop monkeying with atomic power and
bombs  and stuff but it wasn’t.

            Ball Lightning

What comes to mind when you see something
 like that?  What else? Jerry Lee Lewis, of course. 
Yes, sir, “Great Balls of Fire” is a classic played
by a wild man abusing a piano like no one
before or since with the possible exception
of Yanni.  Jerry Lee and Edgar Allan P. would
have hit it off. They both liked them young,
marrying girls just past puberty but, at least,
Eddie’s Looked older, and it was almost legal,
though where Jerry Lee comes from, its
probably legal there too. Well, none of their
respective marriages lasted long.  How could they,
really?  Which concert movie was it that the drummer
caught fire? “Spinal Tap”, that’s it.  I don’t recall
ball lightning being mentioned as a root cause for
that tragic immolation, but it makes a whole lot
more sense than spontaneous combustion. 
Seriously, does anyone actually know of, heard of
first hand, or even knew someone, who could
actually claim to have seen combustible
combustion? I didn’t think so. No one does,
Because it doesn’t happen.  It’s like alien abduction.
Much rarer, actually. There ought to be a game:
Five Degrees of Separation from Spontaneous
Combustion.  I’d play, for sure.  I wouldn’t mess
with ball lighting, though. That stuff is lethal.

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