December 31, 2016

Dante Di Stefano

Epithalamion with References to Philip K. Dick, Paul Klee, and Gene Roddenberry

 

When androids dream of love it’s not like when
they dream of sheep; it’s more like how Klee
envisioned a red balloon floating up
from a taupe and boxy world where a tree
has been squirrelled away in the top corner
and is really only a rack of sticks
the winds rickets into deepest winter.

Yes, the point of all love is to become
small; even black holes and comets know that,
but what I’m trying to say is that love’s
Prime Directive surely cannot be put
through a ship’s universal translator;
instead one strands oneself on a planet
and learns to communicate through old myths.

In an alternate universe, I dream
of myself as a yellow eyed android,
fully functional, and dreaming of you,
my Klingon bride and when we meet in some
dark nebula, I imagine the string,
attached to a red balloon painted
in oil on muslin, a gentle tether
that holds us nowhere amidst the cosmos.

 

 

 

 

Fragment from an Epic Klingon Love Poem Partially Erased by a Quantum Singularity

…………………………………………………………
…Honor… …the enemy in you…
…………………………………………………………
…my eternal warrior… …seek adversity.
…………………………………………………………
…be my bat’leth, cutting across the ridged forehead…
…………………………………………………………
…of my dreams… …I desire…
…………………………………………………………
…the combat of your kisses… …a sweet assault…
…………………………………………………………
…we will drink bloodwine… …there…
…………………………………………………………
…eat squirming gagh… …and skull stew…
…………………………………………………………
…feast upon… …endless defeat…
…………………………………………………………
locked in a lover’s quarrel that disrupts subspace…
…………………………………………………………
…and sends us spinning through the halls of Stovokor…
…………………………………………………………
…marauding… …past enemies…
…………………………………………………………
…of the empire… …pummeling…
…………………………………………………………
…the fear and sinews of cowards… …ground…
…………………………………………………………
…to dust… …opening to the victory of us…
…………………………………………………………
…entwined… …your fist, my fist…
…………………………………………………………
…your body, my… …cloaked bird of prey…
…………………………………………………………
…break my clavicle and roar with me… …our teeth…
…………………………………………………………
…ripping into the flesh… …of each other…
…………………………………………………………
…with you… …armored bride…
…………………………………………………………
…blade that eviscerates… …my days…
…………………………………………………………
…all our strife… …and our operas…
…………………………………………………………
…our conquests of solar systems and galaxies…
…………………………………………………………
…end where we begin, joined in honor before death…
…………………………………………………………

 

 


Dante Di Stefano is the author of Love is a Stone Endlessly in Flight (Brighthorse Books, 2016). He is the winner of the 2015 Red Hen Press Poetry Award, Crab Orchard Review‘s 2016 Special Issue Feature Award in Poetry, and the 2016 Manchester Poetry Prize.

 

Image: “Bones”, by James F. Woglom.