Xitonorus, crawls under camouflage of a giraffe
Xit – Thoughts covering 1938 – 54 (youth)
Xon – Thoughts covering 1955 -70 (adulthood)
Xor – Thoughts covering 1971 – 86 (middle years)
Xus – Thoughts covering 1987 – present (ripened)
All four characters are seated below a billboard with large white letters across the top reading: BETTER TO FALL BACKWARDS RATHER THAN FORWARD. All four figures appear to be handcuffed, & each is wearing a white sweatshirt with a red letter in the middle of the chest area. Seated from left to right are Xit as T, Xon as E, Xor as A and Xus as M. At the end of the scene Xus and Xit exchange positions, thereby spelling out MEAT.
Xus: (matter of factly.) In late March City Works, a literary magazine from San Diego City College accepted 2 of my word breakage poems, 3f & 3u…
Xon: (Brightly.) Ahhhhheeeee……there I was with a sudden thump. I guess there was something between the rafters or under the bed wetting my area, that area being my head. It was all in the splash of a gun, moments before or after.
Xor: (loud but with a sense of vagueness.) I shook the tree full of ravens or pears in the bitching ours of dawn.
Xus: (With derision.) Your memory is glazed by alcohol, by being bitten deep in the bowels of bars.
Xon: (In sweeping tones.) The lawns of the University just kept going, creeping past the stadium in the roar of Autumn.
Xit: I didn’t have a very youthful pitch. Mirth was under the covers. I remember irritating rehearsals in the school basement for a puppet show. I’d rather have been walking along the railroad tracks where dust would rise and be an enchanting mistress by my side. (With conviction.) Convergence is shit!
Xus: (Bitterly.) Then weeks later they take my poems off the table because as they put it I wasn’t plugged in, not part of the world wide web. Who wants to be strung up, or webbed in? Technology is clubbing creativity, & the so called artists can’t see it. Consumerism has wrung the balls of true vision. Damn blinding slosh pit, germs from T.V. flounderings, with repercussions from it all! (Annoyed.) I kept repeating things in the neat slit of night.
Xon: No, sliver.
Xor: Traitorous slice!
Xon: (With glee.) Traitor, yes. Arms out as far as they can go (Smiles.)
Xor: (Defeatedly.) What, what? (pause) The flesh is tearing. (longer pause.) Tracks, it is tracks. (with gloom.) I’m not up for this. Anyway, I was just stumbling along and biting myself again & again. Too much drink erodes one. No key fits & you’re always standing, or wavering with a hand full of them and not knowing what direction to go in, or which key belongs where and why.
Xit: (Softly) I watched spiders as much as possible. Their nets are such fascinating structures. Such sheen….. A fine fabric. There was this spider that lived above my bed, & all Winter it moved above me, less and less as Winter progressed. It began to look like a starved prisoner. Its brown sac shriveled up and it weaved as little as possible to save energy. I searched all over the house for a fly. What a meal that would have been.
Xon: (Excitedly.) One day in early Spring I lay on the ground between two dormitories studying, and I spotted this tiny ball bouncing on the cut grass heading my way. I was going to reach for it but suddenly saw the flaming fuse and covered up. (With disbelief.) This cherry bomb exploded just below my crotch.
Xus: (Desperate.) What? (pause.) Must I hold the bag for that? I mean I’ve grown older, old some days it seems, and people are still playing tricks, but more sinister, and we are the baggage being left by the side of the road, and people passing by will eventually fall further along the roadside. It’s not good to be the last one, for no one will pass you by and give you hope.
Bio: Guy R. Beining, author, poet and painter, resides in Great Barrington, MA, and has published numerous poems in magazines such as Iowa Review, The Bitter Orleander, South Carolina Review, Fiction International, Cairn, Indefinite Space, Presa, New Delta Review, and Black Scat Review. He has showed hundreds of collages and drawings over the years. Most recent art exhibition: Hudson Opera House, Hudson, NY in 2010. Selected artworks paired with worded lines was published by Kamini Press in the collection Out of the Woods into the Sun. (bio from Kamini Press)
Exit Sign (from POETICKS)
Hard To Look At (from POETICKS)