paragon

~

DAVY CROCKETT REINCARNATED

ROOMS WITH A RATTLESNAKE

by Cloyd Campfire 2002

~

The desert was a-crunch with distance & thorny miracles when Davy Crockett Reincarnated unintentionally sunk his wheels into a dry wash.

Next, he went a-drift looking for any tools nature might provide & cracked his head in a deep hole. Dazed, he built a roof on the hole & now had his very own kiva & a new home – alleluia!

A new stage in his life had begun.

All the critters on that particular slope some months ago had dug-up themselves a leader – the desert squirrel, Yahtzee. Yahtzee declared peace & nobody ate anybody else anymore & low n’ behold, manna had been falling from the crystalline sky ever since.

This particular slope of rocky ravines & colorful views, for Crockett, was heaven ~ but then a rattlesnake full of hell dropped down into his earthical room & declared the both of them to be ~

Roommates.

The snake, whose name was Paragon, was a fair-minded roomie, but told Davy he’d spent some time in the pen & warned him that he, Paragon, wasn’t past biting someone’s eyes out in the middle of the night if crossed.

I got a real nice critter on my hands, sardonically mused Davy to himself & turned over to go to sleep.

But over in the lower corner, scaly Paragon wouldn’t stop rattling. He couldn’t help it. His tail had emphysema, which, in denial, he referred to as “bronchitis”. Incidentally, Paragon was also being tested for diabetes & ate 10 tons of sugar every night. But that’s beside the point we’re trying to get at here.

Later as Davy was dozing off, suddenly, Paragon was standing on the tip of his rattler & towering over him, declaring, “Democracy doesn’t work!”

Roused, Davy hollered, “Get out of my face! I’m trying to sleep!”

Bitterly, Paragon stalked back to the lower corner and continued to thunderously rattle thru the nocturnal hours.

As the world turned & the desert whispered its endless beatitudes, Paragon informed Davy, & re-informed him day after day, that just about all the other critters around weren’t doing their duties & were constantly brown-nosing Yahtzee, while he, Paragon, was the only one who was worth a 10-dollar blanket. “And there’s gonna be race wars in this country before you and I are dead!” he added one evening.

Paragon didn’t approve of Davy’s ways either, & continuously whittled away at him too. One afternoon when they were both sneaking a quick nap after a bite of manna, for example, Paragon whittled, “I doubt you can work a full day.”

Davy winced and quoted, “Our doubts are traitors and makes us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.”

“What?” hissed the snake.

“That’s a quote from Measure For Measure by Shakespeare,” grinned Davy.

“And I’m an elf owl’s uncle,” spat Paragon. His venom soaked into the earthen floor as he slithered up the ladder, disappeared in the blazing light outside and went back to work.

After several weeks, the fortress walls of Crockett’s peace of mind were completely whittled down, & all the eternal frontiersman could think about was how hard it was not to hate his roomie, the incorrigible rattlesnake who possessed, it seemed, a colossus contempt for all critters other than himself.

Then, one morning Davy burned the beans. “Oops,” he muttered, exhausted after another night of electric jolts in his head caused by Paragon’s miserable rattle.

“Everything you do is wrong,” hissed the snake.

“And everything you do is right, so who cares?” groaned Davy. He stirred the mess in the pot & thought & finally aimed & shot, “You know, Paragon, when a critter believes he’s better than everybody else around him, I’d say that makes him the most low-down of all.”

Paragon blinked once or twice after Crockett’s sly remark, & quit talking. For several weeks the snake didn’t say a word. Whenever he was in the Kiva, all he did was read. Which Crockett soon got used to & before long, he no longer hated Paragon. In fact, he was growing kind of fond of his scaly roommate who was always crawling around on his belly here, there and everywhere.

But something was brewing inside Paragon’s reptile head. And finally to Davy he said, “The difference between me and most everybody else around here is ~ I got integrity.” With that said, Paragon sprang out of the kiva that pretty red sky morning & complained to Yahtzee, the wise desert squirrel, about everything & everybody, & even threatened a couple coyotes, & came back & started packing his bags. He’d just gotten himself kicked out of the community.

Of course, there’s a moral to this tale ~ a little piece of wisdom that you can apply to your own stay in the transitional zone of Veterans Campus. And that moral is: if you don’t like the roommate you got now, don’t worry. Be happy. You’ll get along just fine, sooner or later, like Davy Crockett & Paragon did ~ Paragon, that poor old rattlesnake with the negative aura so thick around him that it was downright impossible for him to see through it.

“Paragon was hard-working & honest tho’,” added Davy, sitting cross-legged in his kiva & sipping coffee ~ as a few days later, yours truly was interviewing him.  Davy sat there quietly for a long moment.  Finally he concluded, “And, believe it or don’t, that rattlesnake did have some integrity.”

Text Copyright Clyde Collins 2002

~

happy easter

~

God this, God that, God everything & damn it too

the end of reality’s trail & everything else that’s true

the last frontier of hard facts and how-do-you-do’s

I stood on a hill in deep desert & all I had was ‘de blues

~

Find yourself a woman, lad, and work for a living too

make sure she’s a good woman who will always stand by you

raise some kids or corn and ply your trade on the avenue

or you’ll end up standing amongst the cacti with nothing else to do

~

I stood there hard and long concentrating on every thorn

but no angel arrived blowing music on a golden horn

all was quiet but a little wind, no birds, just some ants

crawlin’ around aimlessly lookin’ for someone with whom to dance

~

I trudged back to the truck, crunching the desert turf along the way

opened the doors to the book-store in the rear without much to say

figured I’d sell a book or two if a miracle happened to stray

but there was nobody around but me on this fine lonely day

~

Nobody but a million catatonic cacti with not much to offer but a thorn

stretching off into the distance come evening and come morn

I sat in the wind & the blood of my brain ~ t’was a mournful song

and then, and then, suddenly, a rabbit come lopin’ along

~

T’was the biggest I’d ever seen, about the size of a dog

a jack rabbit who fit no-ways in any kind of catologue

he wasn’t at all shy like other rabbits in other scenes

when he stopped & asked me, “Have you got any books on human beings?”

~

Stunned, I replied, “I have books on coyotes and snakes

cacti, deserts, rivers, God and whatever it takes

to get along with anything including killer bees

but, but all I have on human beings are fantasies”

~

The rabbit sadly bowed his head, loped away and disappeared

I said to a fly buzzing around my hat, “that was really weird”

closed up the store, bent low to tie one of my worn-out shoes

climbed behind the wheel, bumped on outta them deep desert blues…

~

from the out-of-print book

A Love Song To The American Lizard

by Rawclyde!

alias 

Elvis Bojangles

(Copyright Clyde Collins 1999)

~

Madam Beloved’s

shrine

http://spiritdameshrine.yolasite.com

~

back desert trail

~

In a small cafe of this strange strange land, there appeared one day a long-legged, blue-eyed & blond widow of a deceased Papago Indian.  She darted here & there in her new work-place, a timid critter full of curiosity & wonder.

That beauty is gonna give some poor sucker ’round here a real heart thrashing, I thought, as I bit into a burger & gulped down some hot coffee.

Little did I know, that sucker was I.  And little did I suspect that this 42-year-old, chunky-shouldered damsel was the ethereal Desert Goddess ~ personified!

So 48-year-old me wasn’t thinking much about this long-haired blond gal who come to work in the little cafe in the little crossroad where I sold books outta the Book Mule.  I was just minding my own business.  But, as it turned out, I kind of looked like her late husband whose memory she lingered upon, & who had died less than a year before she & I had a conversation or two.  Then I got hoodwinked into going to a birthday party where she showed up.  And then one night I stopped by the bar where she was “grieving” and she bought me a beer.  And then, and thennnnnnn, the desert goddess coyly rubbed up to me as we sat a ponderin’ on our bar-stools.

The next day, there we were in the desert of my dry dusty dreams come true.  I had parked the Book Mule in one of my hideouts that was lost in cacti & solitude.  And two lonesome souls went on a little stroll.

We embraced ~ and I boldly fell to my knees.

As the world turned, the delicious dianthus of my desert delusions decided she didn’t want anybody to know about us ~ because if the Indian clan of her late husband suspected that we were “seeing each other” before her “grieving” year was up they might murder us.  So she decreed that we could not be seen together in public.  Then she declared that I could not talk to her in front of anybody.  Plus, she demanded that I not go see her ~ or even call her.  My beloved would come see me.

So, after she got off work & became properly inebriated at the local saloon, I would on occasion hear her sandals come a crunching in the gravel, in the still nocturnal hours, outside the Book Mule, inside of which I slept ~ in my “monk cell.”  Incidentally, behind this cell, thru a narrow door, was the book store, which was quite original & quite a store.  It’s amazing what you can do with an old one-ton Ford van.  And it’s amazing how elated I became when I heard the gravel crunch outside.  At first barely audible ~ the crunch step by step crunched closer ~ louder louder ~ and then ~

The melancholy voice of the Desert Goddess still reverberates across the Sonoran silent-night of my mind:

“Chewy,

are

you

in

there?”

~

 Slave

to the

Desert Goddess

by Cloyd Campfire

(2000 A.D.)

~ 1 ~

Chewy Sunset, thee
old hobo, knelt at
Her
  nail-cracked sandaled feet ~

Upon that terrain
from which grows
cacti
creosote and mesquite ~

And thru which meanders
jack rabbits, dry washes
& the unpaved
Pipeline Road ~

About a mile from which
this strange drama
did
unfoad…

~

~ 2 ~

Yeeeeeeeap, swathed in
the singing silence &
dry
summer heat ~

Chewy Sunset
knelt at
Her
immaculate feet ~

To pull a thorn
outta
Her
toe ~

After which occurance
Her eyes
magnified their
inherent glow…

~

~ 3 ~

She was divine-
ly
fine-
ly blessed ~

With long legged
long blond
earth-
iness ~

Frill free
Salvation Army fare
was
Her dress ~

Which detracted not
one tithing
from
Her worthiness ~

She wore a crown of
nothing
but memories
of thee humility ~

Of wifehood to
an Indian bully
a-flirt
with criminility ~

While isolated for years
on thee olde
Indian
reservation ~

Now widowhood in
a tiny desert town was
Her
current station ~

A beauty was She
whose child-like
smile
would never grow old ~

She gazed down upon Chew
thru
slashing blue
eyes made bold ~

By his
ob-
vious
dedication ~

To
Her
desert goddess
radiation…

~

~ 4 ~

Her catharsistic eyes
of
splintering
blue ~

Cast
a
paradisical
hue ~

From which
there
was
no escape ~

Across the
arid
land-
scape ~

Yea, these immensely talented
eyes also melted down
the poor
old boy ~

Who had stayed a-kneel
at Her feet
like some kind of
thrift shop toy ~

Yea, Her eyes melted him down
into
the
desert ground ~

‘Til he heard the
desolate land’s
every
sound ~

From deep in a burrow
the snor-
ing of
a squirrel ~

To the dancing vibration
of
a distant
dust devil’s swirl ~

From chanting ants to
a cactus’s
deep
toe-wiggling feet ~

From horizon
to horizon
Her kingdom played
a cacophony replete ~

Chewy fanned out deep
into the terra firma ’til
he be-
come a part of it all ~

A new mineral deposit en-
slaved to the
Desert Goddess’s
siren call…

~

~ 5 ~

Yeeeeeeeap, there
Chewy Sunset lay
gravel buffed by wind
dirt fine as dust ~

A real part of
the land
or
bust ~

A rattlesnake limp in the
heat, crawled across the spot
looking
for shade ~

The Desert Goddess crushed
the critter’s head with
Her foot
n’ silently bade ~

Them both not to follow
Her and
walking on air
She wandered away ~

Then toward
the end
of
the day ~

Quite a few
miles
a-
way ~

She entered the
local saloon
to
slay ~

An endless thirst
and an endless sorrow
for the end of which
Chewy doth pray.

~

~

photos

Raquel Welch

~

(text copyright Clyde Collins 2012, 2017)

~

Back Desert Trail

http://backdeserttrail.yolasite.com/we-the-people.php

~

prairie dog blues

by elvis bojangles

~

back in the desert

that won’t go away

that desert o’ mind

forever to stay

~

platonic man dwells

a dream full o’ love

in a comfy bag on the ground

clouds n’ stars up above

~

he dwells upright

beside a friend

they’re tilling her grounds

a dream with no end

~

something stirs him

platonic man awakes

what’s that noise

it cannot be snakes

~

eyes open wide

the ground shakes

a geyser of dirt shoots up

gravel clods flakes

~

A little head pops up

outta the ground

it’s the shape-shifter prairie dog

in the dark comin’ around

~

she says, “have you any

toilet paper, butler?”

the tricks of the night will never

get more subtler

~

text copyright clyde collins 2017

desert of no return

~

platonic man’s

chronic masturbation

has isolated him

in the desert of no return

~

~

a cute little prairie dog

raises her head

out of a hole in the ground

looking for a platonic relationship

~

~

the man’s brain blows several fuses

cascades down a gully of fantasies

of himself

being a prairie dog too

~

~

it turns out the chatty rodent

is an ancient shape shifter &

transformations herself into a stunning

lesbian poet philosopher

~

~

being susceptible to such magic

platonic man lands in a deep hole of his own

that we shall identify as

morose lizardism

~

~

in which

he actually votes

for

hillary clinton

~

~

from Elvis Bojangles

~

text copyright clyde collins 2016

~

art

“the pious teacher”

by dzaet

http://dzaet.deviantart.com

~

desrt photos

by dan davis

http://dandavisphoto.com

~

model unknown

~

political indication

belongs to clyde collins

alias

elvis bojangles

~