Books Magazine

Boom! Boom!

By Ashleylister @ashleylister
Oh dear, oh dear - one-liners  has not proved a popular theme with our Dead Good bloggers! As it was one of my suggestions, I will shoulder the blame for the distinct lack of posts on topic this week and must now try and step up to the task of rescuing what I thought would be quite an entertaining subject.
The reason I nominated it in the first place is because I have a black Moroccan notebook full of poems, bits of poems, ideas for poems - and at the back a few pages of miscellany where I save up striking lines that have no poem of their own to go to...and I thought: how about trying to herd some of those standalone fragments into a meaningful whole? It would be an interesting challenge to take a bunch of non-sequiturs and make something coherent of them - a bit like raiding a rubbish tip for discarded materials to work with.  Random examples from the back of said notebook include the following:
- big Hans, poacher turned goalkeeper
- the geometry of everlasting love
- scuttle along the spiny highway that is hedgehog street
- he is a Mexican of no fixed adobe
- fusing snippets of electrification
- poison girls come out to play
- schooled in the musky arts
- fractal dreams in smithereens
- friends, robots, cybermen...
- playing second buffoon in the orchestra of life
- as scandal rocks the Surrey Docks
- a pyrotechnician in the Zoroastrian tradition
etc etc etc. Wish me luck!
All of my favorite one-liners are  - by definition - inventive plays on words. Some are conceptual (see the example of continental humoresque below); many are funny (aka smart-assed one-liners); quite often they are quirky, frequently they are paradoxical, always they are clever after a fashion as they wilfully (mis)use language in the interests of being thought-provoking and making the world a more entertaining place.

Boom! Boom!
Herewith five one-liners that never fail to make me smile:
Pinned to the door of an abandoned clown's caravan: "Goodbye, cruel circus. I'm off to join the world."
From Liverpool poet Adrian Henri: "'I've just about reached breaking point,' he snapped."
According to Oscar Levant: "There's a fine line between genius and insanity. I have erased this line."
Graffiti sprayed on the wall outside the Plain English Campaign HQ advised: "Eschew obfuscation!"
From the razor-sharp mind of that irreverent comic genius Julius Henry (Groucho) Marx: "Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana." Priceless.
Please feel free to share your own favorite one-liners in the comments section at the bottom of the blog.

Boom! Boom!

A Mexican Adobe (house of mud)

Right. Here is what I've cobbled together by way of a poem this week. It was much harder than I thought to wrestle those orphan lines into something resembling a coherent narrative. Eventually it decided to take on a life of its own, this happy/sad tale, and though it may not be the final version, I hope it passes muster for now...
Tequila Sundries
He is a Mexican of no fixed adobe,
a  mild man resigned
after many false starts,
to playing second buffoon
in the mariachi band of life;
a funny man,
once they get the hang
of his gallows humor.
It was not by design,
but so be it.
His erstwhile wife, well-heeled
but schooled in the musky arts
had been plucked from his side
too soon after their Tamaulipa honeymoon
by the masterful passion
of a passing pyrotechnician
in the Zoroastrian tradition.
Fire works in mysterious ways.
Bereft, a sadness gnaws at his core
and when the laughter and the crowd
have slipped out of the door
he fritters his after-hours
in seedy cantinas with dark-eyed whores
trying to figure the geometry
of this everlasting love
which triangulated his poor heart,
fusing snippets of electrification
till smouldering wise
he will stand with the dawn,
face shining with tears
and stumble outside
kicking up sand, tequila in hand.
In fact any day at sunrise
in some dusty one horse desert town
you can possibly hear
the thin sound of this lonely man
banging his head on a tack-house wall,
sinking slowly in a sea of remorse,
his fractal dreams lampooned abroadside.
In carnivorous sorrow
he drains another bottle with violent affection,
swallowing worm and all.
I think we're done. Thanks for reading. Have a happy week, S ;-) Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to Facebook


Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog