Saturday, May 14, 2016

Michael Ceraolo- Two Poems

Holiday Interlude

But first,
             the Seven settled in
to watch and experience one of the American Terrans'
famous holiday revelries,
they had previously experienced only virtually

Misty fog mingled with lingering smoke
from fireworks shot off the night of their arrival

People beat the sunrise to save places on the beach
for picnicking,
                     for swimming,
                                          for volleyball,
for tossing plastic discs and other objects
mostly spheroid,
                                 what the Seven
had determined was the most popular activity
to be engaged in,
the ritual murder of brain cells

Bi-planes flew by toting advertising signs

even a lone coyote were
the latest roadside casualties of the car,
the uneasy co-existence between the humans
and many of their fellow creatures

a crowd had assembled
a souvenir shop had sprung up

(definition of souvenir

-a doodad you don't really need
to serve as a reminder
of an outing or a trip
you wouldn't otherwise remember)

over the course of the day,
                                        the Seven's
other senses were engaged:
the smell of charcoal for cookouts,
the smells of the foods being cooked,
the smells of the seasonings sprinkled on the foods,
the tastes of the foods when they were eaten,
the sounds of the different musics
both recorded and live,
the feel of the lake's water on their skin

At night neon lights lit up the sky,
people gathered to watch more fireworks,
         though not all,
                               of today's displays
authorized by the local civilian authorities
everyone applauded the shows and themselves

Happily exhausted,
                             the Seven rested up,
tomorrow the real work of the mission
would begin

The Blob from Area 1

It was a man-made creature,
                                          made from
material dredged from the Cuyahoga River
to facilitate the river's shipping traffic,
dumped untreated and uncontained into the lake
during a time when such dumping was routine

Age:  at least forty-five to fifty years old

Size:  two square miles

Weight:  unknown

Composition:  known only in part,
containing dangerous concentrations
of at least two pollutants
from the toxic alphabet soup:
(polychlorinated biphenyls),
                                        and PAHs
(polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons)
these and the other materials were heavier than water
because the creature was crawling on the lake bottom

Earth bureaucrats had designated
the affected area as Area 1
(no explanation of how they came to name it
as such,
              or whether
there are other affected areas),
one of the crats had written to another,
in a letter recently revealed,
"Sampling date in and around Area 1
clearly shows the ability
of the sediments to migrate"
avoiding calling it a creature)
"and further shows the sediment
migrating in the direction of the water intake"
noting that
                  the migrations was
"toward the raw water intake
for our Nottingham Treatment Plant"
                                                     also noting
"Area 1 is within approximately five miles"
of said intake,
given the mania for secrecy
prevalent at that time and later,
they did not disclose the intake's 
exact location

they couldn't yet tell how fast the creature
was migrating toward the water intake,
that its existence was public knowledge
on this planet,
                     they assured the public
they were carefully monitoring the situation,
that they had a plan of action
should conditions warrant it


  1. Environmental protest and perhaps a terrestrial view from space. A microcosm. Earth encased in toxic waste while earthlings celebrate unconscious of the havoc laying in weight like a mongoose ready to raid the chicken coop, toxicity the enemy of life awaits with barely bated breath to devour, and then, at least in my mind, there is Flint. In depth depiction of creeping toxicity invading the earth like aliens. Is it time for me to wear an aluminum foil helmet? Thanks for sharing.