Jody Azzouni

Poetry

Wintertime

Originally published in The Voyeur, March 1977
Added 6/02/2020
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Wintertime

Poem | Jody's Notes

 

The best metaphorical representative for

Humanity is a bear. He is tall, dignified, and

doesn’t live in the jungle.

 

                                                —P.H. Flannery

 

 

                    This, folks, is an epic poem:


                              I. The Background

 

 

The bear leaves his cave come spring.

 

Spring is made totally of images.

 

                        Nothing exists but images.

 

                        There is no vacuum, no space between images.

 

A. The View from  Inside:                                      B.  The View from Outside:

 

Each image seen is stored in                                Everywhere only images

duplicate in our eyes.                                            exist. They are palpable.

(Have you ever squashed an eye                          They deteriorate on contact

and watched images spurt out                                with View (Breathing has

like oil on water?)                                                    no function in this myth.)

 

 

 

                              The upshot: Spring is seen only once

 

A. The View from Inside                                                   B. The View from Outside

                                    (cont’):                                                                                (cont’):

 

       His eyeballs fill up.                                                 The Bear looks and

       Instead of storing new images                                shatters images

       he sees old ones already in                                   into snow. After a

       his eyes. They age and crumble                            lifetime snow is

       with use into white particles.                                   everywhere.

 

                                                This brings on Winter.

 

                        It will be Winter forevermore.

 

 

                                        II. The Bear dies (Winter Comes).

 

 

 

This is to be a bloody journey

Instead of you reading between

for snow is ground-up glass.

the lines, let me write between

Some think it’s cloud-droppings.

them: as the blood flows out

The Bear begins to suspect

in front of the bear, he sees

In winter everything has                                                           something is wrong as he dyes

a fabulous memory.                                                                 how it layers itself through

Snow is broken memories—                                                     the snow a pretty color.

but also underneath the                                                           the snow. It is flowing out

snow which is shards of                                                            He feels an affinity with the

images, are images never                                                        on many levels at once. This is

seen, and never to be seen.                                                    snails used by Kings.

We would have to turn the                                                       how memory works, the Bear

blood-dyed snow upside down                                                 Purple is close to red and

with bloodied (from snow)                                                        thinks.

hands to find Spring                                                                the bear soon crawls.

which would only be lost in our

icy gaze moments later.

 

 

                                        III. Exegesis

 

 

                                    What did the now dead bear suspect?

Snow is opaque.          He suspected that Transparency (Innocence)

                                    is hard to achieve. He was right.

A                                  It is a complicated procedure.

mirror                          A window is a bleached mirror.

                                    I will go into the structure of a mirror

mourns                        shortly, but we must mourn for the Bear

myth:                           first by offering a romantic myth:

                                    True love makes eyes sweat.

                                    This, when gathered and frozen

A window                      is a window.

 

                                    Now back to Reality. To inspire us,

                                    let us remember the Bear on his last legs

shreds                          (or shreds of legs actually).

                                    A bleached mirror is a lobotomy

                                    (Remember?—by asking that I am

                                    bitterly sarcastic)

                                    and a mirror, I have discovered,

eyes.                            is frozen eyes.

                                    They are mixed together, homogenized,

                                    poured in a tray

                                    and chilled in a refrigerator.

                                    A mirror is flat yet it holds countless images.

                                    That is why it is brittle and can shatter

                                    explosively, cutting everyone around it.

 

                                    A photograph is an happy idiot

                                    by comparison.

                                    Only one image:

                                    it can be bent or stupidly

                                    peered into without

                                    fear.

 

 

 

                                                            Appendix

 

 

Recipe for Jewelry (Winter fun!): Jewelry can only be made in Winter, for jewels melt on Spring days. Luckily, after childhood, Spring is over. Just scoop up a handful of snow, melt in nearby furnace, and pour into mold. Often bits and pieces of senile memories can be seen in it after it hardens. Jewels are hoarded in Wintertime. They can be used again and again instead of real images without deteriorating into snow. The fact of their total artificiality is usually forgotten by the time they are supposed to be used.