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Batouque.

Batouque

   The rice fields of cigarette butts of spit on the strange summons
   of my simplicity are tattooing themselves with sharp peaks.
   Floodgate open, the words perforated in my salvia
   paler above the cities, resurface as cities
   O transparent cities mounted on yaks
   slow blood pissing the last memory into filigreed leaves
   the boulevard bruised comet brusque crossed bird
   strikes itself right in the sky
   drowned in arrows
   It's my kind of night most hollow and most null
   a fan of compass fingers collapsed into the white laughter of
   slumbers
   batouque
   once the world is naked and russet
   like a womb burned to a cinder by the great suns of love
   batouque
   once the world is without inquest
   a wondrous heart where the scenery of glances
   splintered to bits of embossed
   for the first time

   once the attractions entrap the stars
   once love and death are
   a single coral snake resoldered around a gemless arm
   without soot
   without defense

   batouque of the river swollen with crocodile tears and drifting
   whips batouque of the serpent tree of the dancers of the prairie
   Pennsylvania roses peep at the eyes at the nose at the ears
   at the windows of the tortured man's
   sawed head
   batouque of the woman with the arms made of sea her hair an
   underwater source rigor mortis turns bodies
   into tears of steel
   all the leafy phasmas make a sea of blue yuccas and rafts
   all the neurotic phantasms have taken the bit between their teeth

   batouque
   once the world is turned into seduced abstraction
   into shoots of rock salt
   into gardens of the sea
   for the first and the last time
   the mast of a forgotten caravel blazes an almond tree in the
   wreckage a coco-palm a baobab a sheet of paper
   the dismissal of an appeal
   batouque
   once the world is a strip mine
   once the from the height of the upper bridge is
   my desire
   your desire
   conjugated in a leap into the inhaled void
   under the awning of our eyes unfurls
   all the sundust thronged with parachutes
   with deliberate fires with oriflammes of red wheat
   batouque of rotted eyes
   batouque of molasses eyes
   batouque of a doleful sea encrusted with islands
   the Congo is a leap of sun raising at the end of a thread
   a pail of bloody cities
   a tuft of citronella in the wrenched open night
   batouque
   once the world is a tower of silence
   when we are prey and vulture
   all the rains of parrots
   all the resignations of chinchillas
   batouque of broken trumpets of an oily eyelid of virulent plovers
   batouque of the rain killed split finely by reddened ears
   purulence and vigilance
   having raped to the point of transparency the narrow sex of the dusk
   the tail Negro of the morning
   to the depths of the cracked stone sea
   takes on the hunger fruit of knotted cities
   batouque
   Oh! over the intimate void
   --spurted spurting--
   to the very rage of the site
   the injunctions of a severe blood!
   and the ship flew over the crater at the very threshold of the eagle
   plowed hour the ship walked in calm boots of shooting stars
   in wild boots of chopped off wharves and dress armor
   and the ship let fly a volley of mice
   of telegrams of cowries of houris
   a Wolof dancer was dancing on points and signaling
   from the point of the highest mast
   all night long he was seen dancing laden with amulets and alcohol
   bounding to the level of the fattened stars
   an army of ravens
   an army of knives
   an army of parabolas
   and the arched ship let fly an army of horses
   At midnight the earth entered the channel of the crater
   and the diamond wind hung with the red cassocks
   out of oblivion
   blew the hooves of horses singing the adventure of milky voiced
   death over the gardens of carob painted rainbow
   batouque
   once the world is a breeding pond where I angle for my eyes on the
   line of your eyes
   batouque
   once the world is the far-sailing latex drunk from the flesh of
   sleep
   batouque
   batouque of swells and hiccups
   batouque of sneered sobs
   batouque of startled buffaloes
   batouque of defiances of carmined wasp nets

   in the pilfering of the fire and the smoking sky
   batouque of hands
   batouque of breasts
   batouque of seven beheadly sins
   batouque of the sex with a bird-like peck a fish-like flight
   batouque of a black princess in a diadem of melting sun
   batouque of the princess stoking up a thousand unknown guardians
   a thousand gardens forgotten under the sand and the rainbow
   batouque of the princess with the thighs like the Congo
   like Borneo
   like Casamance

   batouque of night without a seed pit
   of night without lips cravatted by the jetsam of my nameless slave
   galley by my boomerang bird
   I threw my eye into the rolling into the guinea of despair and death
   all strangeness solidifies Easter Island Easter Island
   all strangeness cut off from the cavalries of darkness
   a fresh brook flows in my hand a sargasso of melted screams

   And the stripped-down ship dug my thirst-for-branches-minaret-exile
   out of the brain of stubborn nights
   batouque
   the currents churned wisps of silver sabers
   and nausea spoons
   and the wind pierced by SOLAR fingers
   sheared with fire the armpits of foam haired islands

   batouque of pregnant lands
   batouque of enwalled sea
   batouque of humped hamlets of rotten feet of deaths spelled out in
   the priceless despair of memory
   Basse-Pointe Diamant Tartant and Caravelle
   gold shekels flotation planes assailed by sheaves and earcockles
   sad brains crawled by orgasms
   smoky armadilos
   O the krumen teasers of my surf!
   the sun has leapt from the great marsupial pouches of the dormerless
   sea into the full algebra of false hair and tramwayless rails
   batouque the rivers fissure in the unlaced helmet of ravines
   the sugar cane capsizes in the rolling earth swollen with she-camel
   humps the covers smash at the ebbless bladders of stone with the
   irresponsible lights

   sun, go for their throats!
   black howler black butcher black corsair batouque bedecked with
   spices and flies Sleepy herd of mares under the bamboo thicket
   bleed bleed herd of carambas

   Assassin I acquit you in the name of rape.
   I acquit you in the name of the Holy Ghost
   I acquit you with my salamander hands
   the day will pass like a wave with its bandoleer of cities
   in its beggar's sack of powder-swollen shells

   Sun sun russet serpent-eater leaning on my trances of a swamp in
   labor the river of grass snakes that I call my veins
   the river of battlements that I call my blood
   the river of assagais that men call my face
   the river of walking around the world
   shall strike the Artesian rock with a hundred monsoon stars

   Liberty my only pirate water of New Year my only thirst
   love my only sampan
   we shall slip our calabash fingers of laughter
   between the icy teeth of the Sleeping Beauty.
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Article Details
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Author:Cesaire, Aime
Publication:Black Renaissance/Renaissance Noire
Article Type:Poem
Date:Mar 22, 2004
Words:1163
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