Saturday, October 22, 2011

The Rat Wars of 2084




The Rat Wars of 2084
for the ratling


It started simply
when the food ran out.
It became a lifetest for
meat between the small rats
and the bigger rats.
The talking rats attempted to
convince the others they could eat words.
This was clever, but
unsuccessful.

Then things began
to escalate.
Bombs and air raids
made the night sky uneasy
as a pudding in an earthquake.
Bodies decorated the street in streamers
hanging red tinsel from the bending lights
dark blood came down like rain
blood enough to drown in

to float the enterobacterial rodships of every plague
ever seen on a globe of filth and plague.
Anthropophaginian shapes scrabbled for hiding,
dissolved in the shadows of ruin
gnawing on last year's bones, drinking vintage sewage
welling from craters in crazystone runways.
Exterminate the plague bearers,
came the panic cry on the black wind, exterminate
before it’s too late!

But the humans are much
much tougher 
than they look.



October 2011


 Straying from the gothic to the post apocalyptic, but clinging still, hopefully, to the October miasma for your Halloween pleasure.






To see the image I originally had reproduced here to illustrate this poem, follow this link to  Untitled Work by ZDZISŁAW BEKSIŃSKI to a copyrighted site where his entire opus is on view. It's worth it.
Beksinski's bio on wikipedia

14 comments:

  1. "The talking rats attempted to
    convince the others they could eat words."

    Have no idea where that came from, but it is so fitting to what I imagine an intelligent rat might say/do and was hilarious.

    Thanks for the dedication and for the introduction to a good song and new band. Never heard of Leon Russel before, but I'll be checking his other stuff out on youtube. I'm totally getting this and putting that in my playlist for Fallout: New Vegas :D

    BTW this:
    "to float the enterobacterial rodships of every plague
    ever seen on a globe of filth and plague.
    Anthropophaginian shapes scrabbled for hiding,
    dissolved in the shadows of ruin
    gnawing on last year's bones, drinking vintage sewage
    welling from craters in crazystone runways.
    Exterminate the plague bearers,
    came the panic cry on the black wind, exterminate
    before it’s too late!"

    conjured up some mental images that were horrifying. Awesome job. Thanks again.

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  2. Like your "vintage sewage", thus speaketh Ben.
    :)

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  3. I love this turnaround. It came to mind this might have happened before. Didn't work. :) Did a google search on 2084 as well, I thought there was something like a book with that title...:)

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  4. Merlin was, like your Cambion, born of a devil and woman; from the devil he received ancient knowledge, from the woman holy foresight. 'Tis Octoberal and witchy both to peer beyond the rim of time, and this anthropha-ah-ah-CHOO!-('scuse me!)-ginian run with the rats is pure Gothic fin de siecle absinthe bathsalt jeebies. I loved the sky shaking like pudding and talking rats trying to eat their words (if only those Republican candidates could) and the red tinsel. Whoever the ratling is I say c'est tres bon idee. Glad I have cats and it's only 2011, it's only 2011, it's only 2011 going on 1984 going on 2084. -Brendan

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  5. nice...this is deliciously morbid...post apocalyptic human rats...the sea of blood and disease like some primordal soup...i like...creepy...eat words...hehe

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  6. Deliciously disturbing, horrible and halloweenesque. I liked leon Russell's take on "Hard Rain".

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  7. One of my all-time favorite songs by one of my favorite singers...and a version I had not heard before, so thank you!

    As for the poem, my first thought is that Anna Montgomery is going to love "anthropophaginian". My second thought is that this is one of the most misanthropic poems evah. Although I'm tempted to ask for a strawberry tart without so much rat in it, after contemplating the unending clusterf*ck that has been human history, I leave you to your gentle, if rat-laden verse. Loved the pudding in the earthquake.

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  8. Thanks all. The artist I found was even creepier than the subject here, i think. I put Leon in there to mellow things out--one of my favorite un-preachy versions of that song.

    @skav: Glad you liked it, my young friend. I am not through with your rats, yet though. This is just the beginning...mwwaaahahhahha.

    @B: Gesundheit. That doesn't exactly roll trippingly off the tongue,I know but I indulged myself--cannibal is such an over-used word. May the cats protect you--I have an anti-vermin terrier system, myself.I think only Smith and Wesson can protect you from the pols, though.

    @FB: Yes, I knew Anna would like that one, if she can get out of her bed of sickness to read it--it may scare the germs out of her. And misanthropic--moi??? The idea. Thanks for reading and starting your day off with gruesomeness.

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  9. Joy,
    It is survival. Food suddenly became scarce and it became 'small rats against big rats' It seemed sci-fi now but might become a reality one day. Rats!

    Hank

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  10. I love it, a magnificent squirm in the blood pool of misanthropy but it's a good bloodletting of all those pesky thoughts! Humanity like an epizootic for rats - you've made my day! Fireblossoms comment about anthropophaginian made me giggle and cough (expelling those darn germs) I also thoroughly enjoyed enterobacterial. So glad I rose from my sick bed to read it. My mother once tried to convince me we could live on air but that's another story - maybe she'd met those talking rats and thought now there's some sense. And ‘this was clever, but unsuccessful.’ genius.

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  11. this gave me goosebumps hedge...creepy start with... it started simply..gives the feeling it could happen every day ....and it could...made me think of the story in the bible of this city under siege and people started to eat their own children..love your use of metaphor in this one..

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  12. Thanks Claudia. There is a bit of a biblical feel to this plague.

    @Anna: So glad you staggered by(well-wrapped up in shawls and mufflers, I hope, possibly even a respirator for this one) and enjoyed it. I think your mother may have been overexposed to that debunked story about the Hindu mystic woman who said she lived on light. AFAIK, we have not yet learned photosynthesis, or aerobic metabolic abilities, either.

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  13. @FB I'm a bad influence on her. My rats, cats and I all get along very well because we all have one thing in common, we despise the human race in general. The day humans start treating other humans with an ounce of kindness is when my rat, cat and I renounce our hatred of them and make peace.

    Don't see that day coming anytime soon, so Buttercup will keep her paws nice and sharp, Da Doo Tsz (Chinese for big belly) will keep all the diseases at his disposal hiddenand sharpen his teeth and I....well I'll write and wait. Who knows humans may surprise me one day, but until then I trust my animals a lot farther than most people.

    @Joy Gotta warn you rats are survivors and humans are vicious when cornered, but they can't live off of the garbage that the noble rat can :) Don't see a way out of this for the humans. Maybe it's time for a new world order. One with tiny crowns on tiny furry heads :D

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'Poetry is an echo asking a shadow to dance' ~Carl Sandburg