from Linda Perdido
The lovers’ collective vocabulary: Forty-six words; the central object in their over-wandering of Set County and beyond: Maximumification of the state of cool; knowledge of the finer points of balloon navigation: Hazy at first, hazy at best; the state of provisioning as of this moment: Half a dozen ham and cheese sandwiches on rye toast, two Granny Smith apples, a smallish but inordinately fuzzy pink peach, a carton of slimjims, a gallon of spring water from over in Vandalia, and a case of Blitz beer in aluminum cans (with the irate black-tufted Malabar squirrel on the label; irate and like Narthex, zinc of will, gazing knowingly and hard directly into the eye of the would be imbiber; plans for the future: Vague at best, indefinite; religious sensations: Eleusinian, priapic (loosely defined), satanic; their proximate destination: Rattlesnake Mountain Lodge in the High Sierra where the two bad ones envisage another swath of desecration and demolishment at Camp Wounded Bear, a summer institute for advanced study of the Book of Mormon and the golden questions, the playing of Bugles and other Horns; (first) secondary destination: Loon Lake on Matapan Peninsula near the Velvet Sea, a place said to harbor myriad penitent and initiates– many of them old pals of Narthex from his days in the reformatory at Weasel– at the Temple of Lower Motorcycle; (second) secondary destination: Proboscis Island in Smoke Top Bay, Each Sandwich County, and in especial, the upper slopes of Old Moldy where there is to be found a certain medicinal herb, Pheronacea or Gag’s Periwinkle, said to possess spectacular powers of enhancement in the mental realms of sparkle, dazzle and total pizzaz; (third) secondary destination: The animal shelter at New Gradual, Montana, where it is hoped pet adoption might be arranged for, in order of preference: A fennec, an Osborne’s Owlet (the blood-orange variety), and, or, a Jupiter Beetle from Kalimantan said to be able to change colors, imitate rhythmically and in various radiant Coleopteran registers the Top Ten pop tunes of any given moment; tertiary destination: The holy city of Bing in Bandana County (apparently near Laos on their map, a Ziegfield Projection based on the dubious propositions of “Lateral Thinking”) where Bhang may be purchased in bulk at a reasonable cost depending on the current exchange rate of the Beng, a black-market currency unofficially official in that errant place of untamable hoydenry, maniacal hubbub, black lizards (always irresistible for our irrepressible girl); ultimate destination, barring instantiation of the higher (as opposed to the lower) Unseen– the cave known as Morocco’s Lair said to be located behind the false wall, in an unknown closet, adjoining the antique bathroom at the Inn of the Zinn of Mohocs on the occult or hidden side of the hypothetical planet(oid) Blue Streak whose maddening and rubbery orbital periodicity is such that the object never emerges from behind the moon; their purpose in regard to this last: To ascertain the truth of what is said about this feature of Blue Streak, namely Morocco’s Lair, at the Temple of Higher Motorcycle by certain of the higher priests; and what precisely is this something that is alleged to have been said? This they have forgotten, but it runs roughly like this, although scrambled and jumbled by nameless deep space juju:
; and just what is, in precise terms, their true destination to be, after all this tacking and yawing, all this waxing and waning? Vast, rumpled, slumbering Set County, skin the color of the Komodo; whose dream is the inside of a hunk of basalt (in the dream Set thinks, those who once made quite a noise now lie quiet).
Copyright ©2009 by Mac Wellman
Mac Wellman's recent plays are: Bitter Pierce, Jennie Richee, Anything's Dream, and Antigone. He has published two novels with Sun & Moon Press, The Fortuneteller and Annie Salem, and one long fiction, Q's Q with Green Integer. Sun & Moon also published his book of poems, A Shelf in Sheep's Clothing; Roof Books published his poetry collection, Miniature. With Douglas Messerli, Wellman co-edited the large drama anthology, From the Other Side of the Century II. Sun & Moon also published his plays Bad Penny and The Land Beyond the Forest, and Green Integer reprinted (from Sun & Moon) his quartet of plays, Crowtet. Welllman has received numerous awards, including an NEA grant, Rockefeller, McKnight, and Guggenheim Fellowships. In 1990 he received an Obie for Best American Play (Bad Penny, Crowbar, and Terminal Hip), and in 1991 he received another Obie for Sincerity Forever. In 2003 he received an Obie for Lifetime Achievement. He is the Donald I. Fine Professor Play Writing at Brooklyn College.