They look at me funny
when I tell them
I’m a cosmic stunt man,
like I have a condition
because I can’t stop
coming to Jesus about
the elaborate nature
of this phenomenal ruse.
is a rational response
to having undergone
such a prompt step into existence,
to having donned that
stretchy, knowledge-retardant suit
and climbed down the business end
of a circus artillery piece,
only to fall asleep just prior
to the moment of detonation,
to then be flung
like a starry-eyed embryo
into a teeming field of
what’s not even happening.
is an adequate remedy
to that sudden unmasking
into hurtling nakedness.
Like they were immunized once
against the side effects
of becoming a being with needs.
They look at me funny,
as if all those things are true,
and cosmic stunt men
are just a myth.
you’re looking right at one.
What would you call it?
You put on the old
and a bus drops you off
at the edge of a wilderness
that fills in behind you
when the bus pulls away.
Then you gradually awaken
to the fact that you’re standing
in a non-stop field of collisions
with shot peen, asinine thoughts–
like you’re whole world
suddenly became a hot air popper.
That’s when the stunts begin in earnest.
Dashing, dodging, leaping, blocking,
spending many long years
in search of one magic piece of shot.
At night when the moon glows
and you’re walking through the forest,
you start to wonder if a jailhouse line-up
of striped dream characters
isn’t following you around–
loose ends from your other life,
people who shook your hand
before you climbed down a cannon barrel,
nice enough beings you keep straining to remember,
but all you can see are glassy reflections
because the wrong set of lights is on in this world.
Meaninglessness holds out a coat
full of sparkly gold watches
right before you get clobbered on the head.
it’s grappling along the edge of a cliff
with eight-legged beasts of longing,
rolling-barrel sword-play with non-existence,
and taming the lions of your anger.
When you finally submit
to the possibility of revelation
and your eyes meet another’s
in just the right way:
existential barrel rolls,
fake fight scenes
that spill over the rim of time,
triumphs that end with quiet tears
your bones have been holding
safe all this time
until you needed them.
You hold your heart out
like an empty tin can
to everyone you meet.
It’s full of flowers.
You’ve become the type of being
whose presence puts suffering on notice.
For the last trick,
we vanish together.
The sky twinkles with our laughter,
sparkles with our whispered secrets.
I guess I like to call that a cosmic stunt,
but I’m open to suggestions.