Academic journal article Transactions of the American Philosophical Society

Science Lessons

Academic journal article Transactions of the American Philosophical Society

Science Lessons

Article excerpt

The human body is superfluous.

Rochester knew it: lurching home

from a night of swiving and sluicing,

ballocks crumpled, loins wrung out,

fingers dripping and pungent, he was consumed

by knowledge. Having caressed

the soft slippage of flesh from rib and hip,

foreknew rack, gibbet, kettle, all the precise

instruments of quest including

the final, eloquent shudder; knew

pond scum to grow gooseflesh, to be

as freakishly aroused; knew Spanish moss

to dangle as lace, black mud to suck

and ooze with a confession of pleasure;

knew truth a prisoner

begging to be shucked free.

So over and over the glossy girl,

the sleek-limbed boy, must pose

while Love the scientist stutters, repeats himself

staggers through his garbled litanies

husking pure form from the body of this death. …

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