Café Apollinaire (X-XI) Okeefe to Elijah

Tales From Café Apollinaire
Part X and XI
(erotic okeefe to Elijah)
edited 10/11/02 & Sept. 21, 2017)
gordon coombes


exotic erotic desert flowers
of Georgio O'Keefe
are tended by the staff & regulars
of Cafe Apollinaire
the insane Turk enters
a hot wet cloth wound
about his head a flock of eagles 
& hawks take flight pulling
gigantic balloons over this cafe
over this city over Paris
over the Eiffel Tower 
over the Arc de Triomphe
over the Seine & the Rhine & the Rhone
upward & onward circling round about
pass Zurich Brussels Berlin & Amsterdam
over Copenhagen & the Swiss Alps
over the ancient black forrest
over the Carpathian Mountains
over Romania & mysterious Transylvania
sliding downward to Barcelona & Madrid
crossing the turbulent waters
of the Mediterranean to Persia & Mecca
from Jerusalem to Morocco Tangiers & Istanbul
over Damascus Alexandria Troy Palermo & Pompeii
over the three thousand crucified
along the Appian way
over Sodom & Gomorrah & Babylon
over blood-red waters of the Nile
pulled by wind currents towards Johannesburg
from Delhi to Australia & New Zealand to Tahiti
to the Great Wall of China passing over Peking
& the Forbidden City to Japan & further 
to the north to the Palace of the Ice Queen
just outside Valhalla passing over Siberia
Sophia the Gates of Kiev & Red Square
over the rising dust of ten thousand Kazaks
on horseback thundering across the vast Steppes
of Russia over the rushing Volga
circling round about again over London
over the Thames & river Tyne
Dublin & the Martello Tower
Sandy Cove along Hadrian's wall
Edinburgh & Glasgow
from Tintern Abbey & Trinity College
crossing the grey Atlantic
over the Great Lakes the St.Lawrence
the Mississippi & the wild Colorado
the foaming thundering Niagara
from Walt Whitman's Brooklyn Ferry 
to Hart Crane's Brooklyn Bridge
over a seafarer's graveyard in Nantucket
over the coal-fields of Virginia
Patterson & Desolation Peak
to Kubla Kahn's statley palace
to land in a green park a stone's throw
away from Cafe Apollinaire-


Nietzsche in inch-thick eye-glasses       
out of breath & pale 
arrives with Zarathustra
singing songs of the Nibelung
stands on a table preaching proclaiming
the death of God the will to power
time for the Over-man the new improved man  
being taunted by a surly dwarf
Richard Strauss applauds
Wagner storms in with his entourage
of Tristan & Isolde Siegfried & Brunhilde
the Valkyries come swooping down
carrying bags of Gold stolen 
from the Rhine Maidens
all waitinng & praying for the Gotterdamerung
Twilight of the Gods to cleanse the Earth
of the weak & unworthy
longing for the fiery storm
of the all consuming Rajnarok-

Rainer Maria Rilke waxes poetic
about invisible Angels
hovering all about us
cries out for Love Eternal-

day in day out night after night
so much time so much energy wasted
poets & artists argue over everything
the vivi-sectionists of art & poetry
cut slice dice hack away
reducing works of the imagination
to lumps of lifeless flesh
on a cold shiny sterile metal autopsy table
discounting this & that as arbitrary 
inane banal purely decorative
not fitting the proper form-    

Neo-Classicists Romantics Realists
Imagists Symbolists Futurists
Fauves & Fascists
Expressionists Impressionists
post-impressionists Folk Artists
Poets of the streets Mad Surrealists
Dadaists Confused Cubists & Sentimental Socialists
Anarchists & Revolutionaries fill the air
with thundering uproarious Rhetoric
throwing words & food at one another
an improvised comic opera
a burlesque of buffoonery
throwing chairs overturning tables
beating with their fists the air
& faces of their enemies
wits dim-wits half-wits
drawing swords hand-guns rifles
duelling to the death
with eight-foot-long baguettes
over aesthetics metaphysics
& who is to pay the bill
for the evening's Banquet-

Elijah gets up from his appointed seat
shakes his head in disgust realizing
the time for his return has not yet come-

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