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80 Beetles by Mark Cunningham

80 Beetles

Mark Cunningham

88 pages

ISBN: 978-0-9804541-8-5

Otoliths 2008

$10.00 + p&h

URL: http://www.lulu.com/content/2392396


“We waved at each other because we were driving the same model and color car. Mark Cunningham said, hey, could you write something on my Beetles. There are 80 of them. So I tried to write something on one but it kept opening its little pincers, its tiny wings. This led to a certain amount of self-examination, from which I emerged stronger, more self-assured. I was then able to more closely examine the varying structure, the very specific ideational atmospherics, & dare I say the aroma philosophique, of each of these beetles. What I discovered is that these beetles are in fact poems. Unusually good ones; & now I dream of an alternate life.”  Rod Smith

from 80 Beetles

Pleasing Fungus Beetle



                                                                                                  Sorry I’m late.  I wanted to read the shoe store’s

                                                                                                  mission statement.  If book covers are to be

                                                                                                  believed, liberals spend a lot of their waking hours

                                                                                                  being "astonished."  Houdini vowed to com-

                                                                                                  municate from beyond the grave and failed, but

                                                                                                  books are still appearing with blurbs by Robert

                                                                                                  Creeley.  The first thing we need to do is to get

                                                                                                  people who feel down-trodden to stop saying "it’s

                                                                                                  spitting snow," since this shows a lack of self-respect.



Ashy Gray Lady Beetle



                                                                                                 The late nineteenth century saw the rise of mass

                                                                                                 advertising, socialism, and the attempt to

                                                                                                 photograph spirits.  The images or their negatives

                                                                                                 were manipulated by people who wanted ghosts. 

                                                                                                 She said that afterwards I’d be nothing if not tired. 

                                                                                                 But I was not tired.



Mealybug Destroyer



                                                                                                Samuel Johnson kicked a stone to prove the stone

                                                                                                was real.  I still have no definitive evidence that

                                                                                                Samuel Johnson was real.  You could tell by her

                                                                                                panty lines that she was a sensible person.  Another

                                                                                                way to make ghosts:  next time people come over,

                                                                                                slide a tape recorder under the couch.  Later, alone,

                                                                                                you’ll hear feet shuffling, feet walking, furniture

                                                                                                moving, and sounds that are almost words but not