A ~ Ferlinghetti Memorial Supplement ~ 60 Narrations
Syndic Literary Journal

Ferlinghetti Memorial Supplement ~ Rough Song of Animals Dying

Rough Song of Animals Dying

Narrated by Francis Poole

Delaware

Rough Song of Animals Dying
          by Lawrence Ferlinghetti

In a dream within a dream I dreamt a dream
of the reality of existence
inside the ultimate computer
which is the universe
in which the Arrow of Time
flies both ways
through bent space
In a dream within a dream I dreamt a dream
of all the animals dying
all animals everywhere
dying & dying
the wild animals the longhaired animals
winged animals feathered animals
clawed & scaled & furry animals
rutting & dying & dying
In a dream within a dream I dreamt a dream
of creatures everywhere dying out
in shrinking rainforests
in piney woods & high sierras
on shrinking prairies & tumbleweed mesas
captured beaten strapped starved & stunned
cornered & traded
species not meant to be nomadic
wandering rootless as man
In a dream within a dream I dreamt a dream
of all the animals crying out
in their hidden places
in the still silent places left to them
slinking away & crawling about
through the dense underbrush
the last Great Thickets
beyond the mountains
crisscrossed with switchbacks
beyond the marshes
beyond the plains & fences
(the West won with barbed wire machines)
in the high country
in the low country
crisscrossed with highways
In a dream within a dream I dreamt a dream
of how they feed & rut & run & hide
In a dream within a dream I saw
how seals are beaten on the ice fields
the soft white furry seals with eggshell skulls
the Great Green turtles beaten & eaten
exotic birds netted & caged & tethered
rare wild beasts & strange reptiles & weird woozoos
hunted down for zoos
by bearded blackmarketeers
who afterwards ride around Singapore
in German limousines
In a dream within a dream I dreamt a dream
of the earth heating up & drying out
in the famous Greenhouse Effect
under its canopy of carbon dioxide
breathed out by a billion
infernal combustion engines
mixed with the sweet smell of burning flesh
In a dream within a dream I dreamt a dream
of animals calling to each other
in codes we never understand
The seal and steer cry out
in the same voice
as they are clubbed
in Chicago stockyards & Newfoundland snowfields
It is the same cry

The wounds never heal
in the commonweal of animals
We steal their lives
to feed our own
and with their lives
our dreams are sown
In a dream within a deam I dreamt a dream
of the daily scrimmage for existence
in the windup model of the universe
the spinning meat wheel world
in which I was a fish who eats his tail
in which I was a claw upon a beach
in which I was a snake upon a tree
in which I was a serpent’s egg
a yin yang yolk of good and evil
about to consume itself

 

 

 

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