Mornings at Rosedale

Mornings at Rosedale

by Cam M. Roberts
(for Mackenzie Finnegan)

How many times have you stirred me
from my slumber in the uncouth mornings
as you were on your way out the door to teach
the kindergartners what this world has to offer?

You must’ve discovered me
on one of the promiscuous couches,
or thereupon the unforgiving floor,
surrendered to my limits
or in my asceticism,
I had no pillow, no stone,
though I kept my fear
of falling off of beds.
My body stayed contorted orderly
like a crippled strand
of something still worth having,
all six feet of me under
my rainbow blanket from Mexico
now rendered thus: a cocoon –
wherein I ruminated in REM cycles
with hopes of consecrating
an eternal metamorphosis.

You sounded-off startling
voices I never knew you possessed,
in dark deep resonant registers,
syncopated and cadenced commands
with monosyllabic words,
first a matriarch, then a sergeant, and so on…

Time to wake up
Class starts at eight
Come on, sit up
You will be late

I’m recalled to life
this very instant
out of dreams
out of comas

The front door would close, soberingly.
Soon after, the shutting of a car door,
then the engine starting,
and you driving away.

And, the world would go on
with
or without
me.

© CMR, 2013
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No Exodus

No Exodus

by Cam M. Roberts
"Rough for Theatre I" by Samuel Beckett

Samuel Beckett’s Rough for Theatre I from the Beckett on Film collection.

They say when an innocent victim of circumstance
is taken away from the earth,
that the state of injustice
will rot through the tangle of sins,
becoming inextricable from the on-setting 
force which put all the evil into motion –
This is not to say original sin
is to blame, but a nostalgic god,
who constantly bears witness
to the myths & follies petrifying
through man, solid stone to core, no longer
a mere stain where the blood can freshen
the eternal wounds, but drawn inward
toward the core,
like Cain,
like Moses,
like a slow crippling
corruption that hardens
hearts into exile
like a certain blindness where spirits
glaze over the eyes like two ghostly cataracts –
History repeats itself,
over and over,
they say they’ve seen
none too little change, a fool’s glimmer
of hope remains wherein none
declare, question, or exclaim:
I told you so, I saw it coming, but no one ever listened, no one was there.  

Others will forever whisper like otherworldly hosts
that your mean streak is too much for them to bear –
Don’t let the fuckers get you down.  
You must love them at a distance like Francis Bacon or David Lynch,
just practice your loving detachment.  Listen, you must tell yourself
plenty of things, at times lie if you have to.  
We two, the both of us are more than privy
to the viler silences made impermeable
by four walls,
little light,
and idle quiet.  

I’ve no altar to lay, no plinth
to agitprop
my propagations from so as to shout
throughout the hollow hills of this nation:
I told you so is neither salvation nor damnation.    

I carried my sorrow & shame to fruition
whereby as grey evenings malingered to nothingness and my love
did fleet through my fingers like dry smoke,
brandishing my sanity like a trophy of the foe
vanquished, then slung thereupon the eyes of others,
bereft as a high priest amongst heathens:
Slung, slung, unrelenting pain, strange dust
converging up as if it were slung like a raggedy
rising fuck in cloudy clots of dirt undulating skyward
from the soiled earth.

Though this be a travesty, overwhelming to us all –
It be not insufferable.  
Come.

Let’s at least pretend –
Imagine you are Sisyphus, and I am Prometheus.
There’s only one rock
befallen us –

 

© CMR, 2013

The Spectacular Origin of Theatre

The Spectacular Origin of Theatre

by Cam M. Roberts
(for Lisa Weller)

When you accost
the sheerness of the garb
which sprawls those surfaces
of privacy –  
the bodily dressing –  
You are nuanced no more
in the guise of gaudy design. 
 
You pull the stitches taut,
You fit into it,
Neither resembling Atwood’s accusation:
 
            You fit into me
            like a hook into an eye
 
            a fish hook
            an open eye *
 
Thus you fit into it
As if
Some magical flaw,
Flocking the prenatal womb
Of whence you came.
 
The thread reinforced,
Crossed, looped over
And under and again
And again and so on
And so forth –
Like the memory
Of an ocean wave,
Aquatic servitude
To pummeling amnesia.
 
Yes, actors, you are privileged
To stand still
While sizing up your
Anatomical dimensions
And your vanity’s ego. 
 
You must be calm,
stop spreading, look up,
straight, hang that up,
you’re late, you’ve lost
weight, fold along the crease,
not water-based, use the grease
paint, pants up to your waist,
wear a slip for heaven’s sake.
No, you’ll break it, that costs
Money kid, dammit, I’m tired,
I’m sick, I’m through
With this fucking bullshit!
 
As a rendering, all that’s needed
Is for the actor to be – to act, so to speak –
Like a blank inanimate canvas
To essentially have the imagined creation
Sketched ebulliently upon the fabric. 
Displayed like the synapses
Rapid-fire, shooting sparks onto
The page, the pistons pumping
Through the tight twitch.
The thundering spindle
Weaving a metronome of fibers
From the sewing machine –
Giving birth to genius
Looming textile opuses
From the needling wand;
The nimble hot and eroded
On the thumb –
 
I am the best you’ll ever have
Child, remember that,
I’m the leaves from the Garden of Eden
You snatched from the tree
To hide your body
You discovered;
A rather reluctant exhibitionist – woe is you –
Even the most corrupt eyes can shut to cover the rest of you:
Afterwards, your indulgences
At which you devoured the apple
Hooking your teeth into God’s eye;
Then God decided you were
Imperfect, Unfit, Unclean.
Thus, the mere sight
Of your naked bodies became
The barbed hooks
Impaling the bulging tight
Bloodshot eyes of yourself
And the other,
They’re all Screaming in horror, in horror –
 
This element is coded like blood
Sifting through the veins
Upon the zip, out of the buttoning up,
The tying of laces, the fastening of belts,
The brushing of lent, the collar adjusting
To your neck like a serpentine noose –
 
You are hidden and vanity takes you
To the necessity of circumstance,
A creation from the centre of the prophetic
Brain of which is born boldly
With posture rectified
And nuance rusticated
From the core of conceptual
Bliss; the dwelling space
Of enigma.
 
The glow commences as if
An impatient daybreak
Tore back and opened
The curtains of clouds
And melancholic falling night. 
The stagnant veal shorn off
In such frantic entropy.
 
The intangible thinking,
Stands incarnate
Stunning the perceptual
In-ward look –
 
A welcomed delusion,
A sideward step in another direction –
Whether shoes, worlds, lights, speeches, color of hues.
The costume is the thing – 

And you are not you. 

 

© CMR, 2013

Siren

Siren

by Cam M. Roberts

Almost like a Beckettian Muse, the latterday Billie Whitelaw,
within a corridor of spectral light wherein May paces metronomic nine seconds at length,
spiraling inward, clockwork, ritual of no, unbecoming to Amy,
an anagram, and so she unmakes and negates herself,
unravels as lights minimize out of their belated installations, how her afterimage hovers,
affixed within darkness, that undoubtedly absent form, now completely unseen,
then returns as some galvanized inconceivable presence,
the inimical vastitudes of darkness with reference to the Void,
empty hole in shut blackness,
the Footfalls ringing louder in silence no nearer in distance
than its resounding ambient paths she perpetually overlaps,
as echos fail to be born from the unknown source,
so instead these yonder voices
unnerve us & disquiet the rest into our Momento Mori… and we pass…

© CMR, 2012