October 17, 2010 by Marcus Speh (Birkenkrahe)
[We're vacationing in Corpus Christi, Texas, right now, and I've vowed not to write on paper or keyboard while here. Since she saw me suffer, my dear wife suggested I could write flash on shells, stones or scales found at the beach. And I did!
Breaking away from the warmth and the wiliness of Texas to quickly send you this with the digital wind, instead of a card.]
Selected Works of a Hermit Crab Written on Shells, Stones and Scales
1. I’m like the sun: there’s only one of me. I’m like the last beat of your heart: no sound escapes my hollow. Do not publish what you don’t understand: copies do not cement truth, they bury it. If you believe in stony men they’ll skewer your smile. Stick to soft surfaces: your skin is never the same surprise.
2. I’m an infant caught in a broken shell by a powerful curse. Say “ME” aloud bowing North, South, West, East and you’ll take my place for a 1000 years. Or say nothing and remain who you are, flaws and farts, fearful fantasies and all.
3. A man made his living by writing prose poems on found shells using the finest calligraphy ever seen. Whenever anyone tried to copy his fragile creations, they lost all their might. The president of his country gave 9 of his texts, consisting of 100 words each, written on the dried skinless skulls of the rare Sargasso sea turtle to the heads of state of the world’s 9 leading nations. One day a master thief stole all nine skulls and held them ransom for 1 billion dollars. Subsequently, the heads of state met with the prose poet for 1 incredibly long hour in which he painted one letter on the nail of the right thumb of each of them. The letters spelled “never mind”. From that day on, politics turned poetic and never again became the butterfly business it had been before.
4. I’m no poet, I’m an oyster. That’s why I can be brutally honest: you hold death in your palm – I was murdered by time as we all are. But I rode my wave to the end: that’s courage!
5. The love that longs, lasts.
Published in ILK Journal and included in the > language > place carnival #3 by Blue Print Review ed. by Nicolette Wong.