Sunday, April 28, 2013

The Strange Existence (and Subsequent Non-Existence) of Albert Cribbage

(a précis)

This is not a poem, not even a prose poem.  But it shares enough quirkiness with poems I enjoy for me to find it in the spirit of National Poetry Month, so in it goes.

I found this while I was going over some of my old writing projects.  I say "projects"; these were not for any kind of organized course or anything.  I wrote (as I still do) whenever I have a bit of idle time and am able to cobble together thoughts in any particular direction.  This one struck my fancy, and the précis tag was intended to remind me to extend it into a more protracted argument, which (of course) never happened.  Other ideas distracted, and continue to distract.

Anyway, without further ado, we present:

The Strange Existence (and Subsequent Non-Existence) of Albert Cribbage

Albert Cribbage had his dream, and he spent much of his life constructing her. Blessed with the world's longest serial lucid dream, he manufactured a perfect Woman over a period of years, taking as inspiration pictures from fashion magazines (the late 80s, which he preferred, much to the disgust of his "hipper'' friends), television commercials for beauty products, and several of the mainstream literary journals. He did, after all, want her to be well read.

At last he had completed her; all that remained to bring her to life (insofar as that was possible for her) was the Kiss. He went out and purchased fine satin sheets, and a royal purple bed cover set (limned in gold cord, of course). He settled into bed, and tried to go to sleep, with great difficulty, as he had never in his life been so excited.

At length, he managed to doze off. His dream began, as planned, with him approaching his soon-to-be-loved in his bed. He leaned down, as in the fairy tales of yore, and touched his dry, trembling lips to her still, perfect ones. Instantly, she opened her eyes, and it was as if they had been waiting for each other for all of eternity. She allowed herself to be swept up even further in the kiss, and he was soon with her, under the covers.

They made love, passionately, in the semi-darkness (where all dreams are; the well-lit ones are simply optical illusions in mid-slumber), and after several exhausting but very satisfying hours, their legs became entwined as they enjoyed the smooth sleep of afterglow.

In the morning she awoke, and the memory of the past night had left a smile on her face. But, she mused, he was still not quite perfect (italics hers), and once the morning niceties (a warm shower, a generous breakfast) were done, she set out for the newsstand, where she thought the latest monthlies from Paris might just give her the ideas she needed to create a new dream lover, one she would want to keep for good...

Copyright © 1996 Brian Tung

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