Surely mankind’s greatest invention is the sentence.
Since Aristophanes and Socrates
Are talking poetry—with the gods’ blessing—
With a whisper about a parchment—call
It a ‘sur-fact’, a secret, or maybe
A surface—just a simple white canvas,
Really, a talented tabula rasa,
A prime mover—prima facie—the desert.
Say poetry is like that too, just before—
Before the spacial silence like
—like, it’s like the desert—
And then when rain begins—a kind of Brain
Rain—it draws the oil up, surfaces it,
So it’s slick, the mind is, his daemon. Still…
The lamps are lit, so Socrates can see
That Aristophanes is pouring his
Particular oil into open ears,
Into everyone’s evening ears and eyes.
And Aristophanes goes for the joke too.
He farts. Real funny. He farts and pretends
It’s a hiccup out the wrong end. Stand on
Your head, why don’t you, Aristophanes?
…For its Aristophanes
Who is about to give an encomium
To Eros. Too sophisticated
To offer praise for a dead god, he
Will spin a tale of sun and earth and moon,
Of round bodies and moieties in search
Of themselves—this same Aristophanes
Is stinking up the stage right now…