Jesse Glass

The Argument: Brother & Sister find a doll in the attic.
The Brother buries it in a mock funeral & digs it
up again, after which it seems to have an intelligence
of its own &
appears to be the agency behind a rash of inexplicable fires.
At the doll's bidding
the children murder their parents, and are themselves
burned to death, yet the doll remains unscathed.


What the doll sez                once buried in the earth                                dreams              day & night the rain


               fall above it
                                                           the soul of it                                     wet like a grub
                                                           washed clean by the blood of our looking
                                                                    clock ticking                                            gold
                                                                    dustmotes before it
                                                                    in a lens of light

                              sez the boy took it to the fields and buried it

                                                over and over                             the child's acid prayers
                                                ate away the sky till nothing but the Root of God
                                                            was visible                         tumbling in the bright void                    True Bones

                                                            snapped fingers to the doll                    Tap Root                    pierced it

heard Doll nothing                  suicide doll                     one eyed wooden eyed            all directions laced
in a black torus          stake in the heart          sez

                                    red clay stained its head                     then it knew...


PAMA picks face (darkness seen from the) mirror. Smiles contemplating World Beast & Great Chain of Being as things remain fused into one Suffering *tooth * hammer * nail. MAPA casts seed into hole & lizards beautify moon-lichened rock. MAPA sucks own cock licks own clit shudders before the (what's that in the corner) vomiting forth moths whirling in autumnal haze. MAPA has more teats than Diana of the Ephesians.
                                     more blesst than
                                                              business suits

                                 Speaks from its own fleshy                                      hole with the sound of many waters.

                                                                          Ventriloquises for stones & paving tiles & guinea pigs

casting all things in its genteel image.

                                 O doll in the cist                        runehewn                            runerock

                                             O! 1,           O! 10,                        O! fragile 5                                         braver
                                                                 than Quasars!                         O Hochma!                                      O Binah!

                                                                                   weaker than Tygers
                                                                                   or Martin Luther!
                                                                O warrior pierced through the temples
                                                                                   with a tent stake!

                                                                                   falls between the legs

                                                                                   & Boy & Girl

                                         in their nakedness           drag open earth                     Doll awaits them
                incorruptible                          impervious to weather or the curved beak
                its promise the vacant stare

crowns them King & Queen              suggest          they mount their cardboard thrones!                 (MAPA

                                                                                                                                       battering the walls)
                                          Doll teaches                                                                         what it means to harrow Hell

                                                          ride the Bull in the Grave                               caper deosil by garage light
                                                                                     while T.V. flickers unwatched

in the midnight bedrooms

                                                                        So King & Queen learned

                                                whispering of the dickie bird of steel
                                                                red clack of wheeling beak
                                  lands point first                        in undiscovered continents of Gland
                                                                                   loiters there
                                                                                   among blood geysers
                                               confusion of blood & air                                   & the hermetic heart sealing itself
throbs to stillness on a purpling stalk

                                               King gave Queen his milky scepter of skin

                                              she held it played it                          & they ruled

                                                                among the cardboard Galahads
                                              where MAPA stored the Xmas bulbs

                                                         Angel of plastic
                                                                              angle of elastic

                                                                                                   blackens in its robes
                                      flame wings while

                                                                              MA (/) PA

pig meat         "what you doing in there"            Boy sez: "workin' grails"       Sis: "Yeah"      "keep it down" sez Pa                      Sis: "ok"               pyramid of matches in her lap

                                                             headlines in paper: DOG DEATH

                                                             OUTBREAK/INEXPLICABLE FIRE

old man in his walker          just a slippered foot found                     plastic angel speeds

                                                                                 bolide into the distant barn

                                                   out near to Mattie's ford                             MAPA roars                                                    itself to sleep                           threatens

the antique gods                                   moans & farts                           for Gods so fear the gross body

                                                                                                                 of tallow           draining               on the slabs

                                                                                                                               O words are tarochi
                                                                                                                                words are the fool
                                                                                                                                cur at his heels
                                                                                                                                abyss at his
                                                                                                                                 toe tips
                                                                                                                                 the hanged man
                                                                                                                                 swelled foot & tongue
                                                                                                                                 glitter of gold leaf
                                                                                                                                 fleur de lis
                                                                                                                                 unbelievable lioness with
                                                                                                                                 eyes of a starlet
                                                                                                                                 hooked on valium
                                                                                                                                 peevishly looking
                                                                                                                                 on while a strong man
                                                                                                                                 unhinges her jaws
                                                                                                                                 last trump & the dead
                                                                                                                                 uprising puppets from
                                                                                                                                 cigar boxes jiggle
                                                                                                                                 on strings the great unwashed
                                                                                                                                 climbing stairs
                                                                                                                                 to Versailles
                                                                                                                                 now tin flowers
                                                                                                                                 bite the hand blood
                                                                                                                                 makes the colors glow
                                                                                                                                 the rune real

Doll whispered

               "rip me with your teeth                                             my hounds
                               sew me together                    Regina

with waxed thread, bold stitches

                             seal a black stone in my head

                 stitch it closed with red X's

                             roll me in garbage

                 then cut threads loose from my lips

                             piss upon me wipe ass & belly with me

                wipe a black dog's blood across my lips
                I'll bawl the songs of a child lost in a dark wood

                                                     a frozen river
                                                     moon & stars

                                       sees Mother & Father
in silver chains staring at their reflections
                                                    in the ice"



MAPA rose in the mulch bed on brutal elbows. "Wat u say?"

                                                      It stumbles in

                                                                       "U Two MUCKIN yet? THOU SHALT not"

lowers head to charge                   King & Queen surround it

                                         Now Doll with butcher knife

                                                                          with stiletto


                                                                                           with ax & hammer

strikes the Midgard                         MAPA                       struggle                           furrows furious                      floor

                                                         stretched in the Microcosmos

                                                                                 Doll laughs                        turns, dropping clods of summer fields

crickets in the corners of the room                        small rivers churn down dagger handle

                                                          cut the MA from PA

                                                                          holy butcher                             (IT on the 10-sided block)

release Mother cries
                                                                          mule brays            dog howls                    crow caws                release

                                                          coiled bone Spring               in a red snap flower

                                                                                         release nerve spirit from bone hollow
                                                                          stars wheel

                                                                                         above the house while

                                                       (10,000 atomic suns explode)

                                                                             uncouple I from T

                                                       wailing 'Death is Dead' in the middle of the air.



                              Doll sez                                   if you hear my voice

                                               you know my secret

                             clock transformed                              beyond motors

                                               transfiguration of the                                               tick tock

                             mechanism of breath in an instant

                                                                             the Kingdom of Doll

                             when                                        engines                        burn out

                                                                             in a power surge

                                                                                             --that darkness--

                                                                       you must ingest the body

                                                                                        of the alphabet

                                                                                         --that silence--

                           then flames crackle                              pyre                                 dancing match

                                             flame head lick flame                             browns        blackens

                            loosens from the earth                                            & flies

                                                                to a heaven                                              red & blank as heated nickel

                                                                                         another torch                                     points in 4 directions                                                                                            tumbles

                                                                                                             on a hay rick

                                                                                                                                 sirens wail

             then Doll cried for a cap of stinking fur
& horses fell on their elastic foreheads                        long tongues
            calibrated slather                      pasture mud
                                                     for insect eyes
                                                     & mandibles to seize...


"Must sleep"
                       sez Doll

                                "bury me till Algol glows           till Wormwood falls        till the bite of the Horned Moon amen
           till each dead tree has an owl in it                 till the boar's head stalks from the kettle

                                                    on tripod legs

           till the Tyrants' hands know uncontrollable applause


                                                               till the Tully monster returns

                                            to frisk in tropical shallows

                                                               its blind proboscis winnowing


                      Hide me

                                  in a box of Sard
                                                     till horn blows above the marble vaults

                                                     & the dead admire their cramped toes

            then drag stitched lips across your own
            & suck doll's breath for want of proper air.

                                                     & on that day               all cards will be

                                                                    Jack of Diamonds

                                                     framed on a playroom table
in a farm house         in the middle of a field                                 of thickets in blossom each blossom
                                    the head of a child                       bruised by brutal forceps

& on that day

                            angels will fly                                         on meathooks                in steel boxes/                      birds

                                                                                          will be worms

                                              flying through the rocks
                                              missiles tumble

                                              television apocalypse                             & sweet songs from the squeak box

                                                                   turn to a salt

                            scrabbling in the ear

                                                                   but before I go


                                              Cold                             so cold                                                     you see your breath

                                                                                  & a skeleton strung


                                                                                  from the rafters                                         of earth

                          one arm pulled straight                                                            pointing

                                                                                  (Grand Man                                              Kaedmon             Ancient

                                                                                                    of Days)

                                                                                                                                                    in a web of twine

                                                                                   next to the Bone Man

                                                                blue corpse                                   in a block of ice

                                                                                   apes the gesture

                                                                                    Nigh the block

                                                                a Bald Man                                    naked


                                                                                                       repeats the gesture of both


these I saw in my garden grave                                                                    to give you before I'm gone

                                                               I, Doll, cried out
                                                                                  for love of you,

                                                                                  my King, my Queen

                                                                                  but earth said

                                                                                                      'Hush' &

                                                                                  clotted my voice

                                                                                                      & I saw    further
                                a Gray Man                                                   who                                     limned bones

                                                                                                                       & melting corpse

                                                                                   & naked man                                  He

                                                 can't render the picture
                                                 to his satisfaction

                               & his Apprentice


                                                                                                            engraves                             the painting

                                                                                                            as the Painter works

                                                    each miserable mistake                                                            cut

                                                                         into the plan

                                                                         without question.


                                                  Then I screamed to

                                the whispering match                       fire!

                                                    dance of smoke
                                  unlaces fingers in the eyes

                                                    down the throat

                                  a black rose                                    streaked with red

                                                    follows a hidden


                                   there the vortex                               will drag you

                                                    & the Soot Mother

                                                    put you to sleep

                                                                        No detective                                  find you

                                                                        No judge lock you away

                                    No MAPA to number your nerves
                                                                                      cup your screams

                                                                                                          in its mouth

                                                                                      distend your bellies                        with its trumpet breath

                                                                                                          ovipositor piercing                 your fine skins

                                                                                                                             to leave                 the gnawing Witness


                                                                                                           the guilt                    that tunnels


                                                                                                                        through the bone

                                                                                                                        & locks its bright cocoon

                                                                                                                        behind your eyes."


                                                   & Doll lifted one arm
                                                                    pressed a hooked flame

                                                On the tongues                                    of Boy

                                                                    & Girl

                                                                    & they shrieked in languages unknown

                                                                                     half spasm & half swoon

                                                                    shadows pinned                                between the burning joists

                                                                                                          pierced by a rod

                                                                                     they tumble under steles

                                lie with compass needles                                                    spinning on their breasts

                                                                                     caged ghosts

                                                                                      boxed together

                                                      death clangs                                                                      in every nostril

                                                                           tektites cover                                                them in silence

                                                                                                              & their screams

                                                                           locked in the sprung                                     jaw bone

                                                                                                              lipless                                       gathering the dark

          while in a space                                      swept clean                            Doll feels the planetary shift

                               & a Hand finds it                                       among the ruins

                                                                                                 of a book

                               thrown face down                                                       in the fire

                                                                                                  frees the Hieroglyph

                                                                                                                   from ashes

                                                                                                  & bones of Unclean Beasts

                                                                                                  whose roars are the hissing

                                                                                                  Athanors of Heaven.


                                                                                                   Doll taps with fists of stare
                                                                                                                      through reflective panes
                                                                                                   no God nor maggot there
                                                                                                                      only your flattened face

                   among the handmade quilts                   lace                           heart-shaped                      wedding pillows

                   samplers                         stitched by virgins           bored with ease of life

                   among spool manikins                           dressed in fashions of 1847                    corn dolls

                                                                                                      crudely carved

                    mandragora                            phalanxes of beads                      cloth

                                                   stiff as old flesh                                  with blood & tears

                                                                                                                                 Doll with rusted crown

                                                                                                                                 in the glass casket

                                                                                                                                 harrowing the eye,
                                                                                                                                                    the ear.


You may get more information about Jesse Glass and purchase more of his works online at:  Jesse Glass

 copyright   2003