blackbird online journal spring 2002 vol.1 no. 1


NORMAN DUBIE | Book of the Jaspers



Dear Ahyum Lo Nasa Vueh:  Marie, this is the name of the dead
that they have given you in the Laotian hills.
And I am weirding this
straight into the Bardo following the tracks
Khandro left when ciphering my true mother's  voice
which I detected to be actually present in that ventriloquism.
It's a halving of the 'golden mean.'  I've tracked her

past a small nursery of suns'-abraxas near the center
of our galaxy. It's hopeless perhaps to think I'm transmitting
to you.
And yet Ruth Psalter said it was a commonplace, a mourning siddhi
of Angkor Wat.

I think any letter to the dead should begin with apologies
and flute songs.
Your sister Laura has been wonderful
with Urze. She is, though,

concerned about your accident.

Asks if it isn't foreshadowed at several moments
early in the transcripts from Lux.

My answer was,
I think not.  There were glad ringsels in your body's ashes:
a stylized Nairatma, blue shooting from its crown
and an Askobya buddha with diamond hevajra tears
on its golden sleeves of bone.

Urze, Laura and I went to the Maine woods
and there under Norway spruce
we all dreamt of a yellow bear burning
while he danced over a still lake —
the canon bone of a moose
for a great red mace
held high above his head.
He was joined in his dance
by a crashing taxi of loons. A net
of grapes over  the bear's face.

The moon was full.

The loons together made a sound
worthy of birthing dragons.

We heard the voices of Flute Clan maidens
over the water. There were green lights flaring
in the direction of what must have been Quebec.

We left cotton string around a small water jar
for your thoughts that evening.  Your sister is quite

worried about the 'pova-hic passage'
you made to the Four Peaks.

That was twenty-five years ago, wasn't it?
Do you understand my question?  If this has worked, my love to the Khandro!

You know, this papier-maché moon that transects the Mars dome
is finally depressing to me. So I've written a letter
to the President of France asking him to respectfully fuck off.
Our little exercise in projective verse must be terse,
or worse, not at all.
Blessings and quick rebirth.  Urze-la says we'll find you.    Paul.


                               wat ruins. lo, lo. back in a moon.
va, del hi. ffee's oldest sister says you, ekajati,
killed the brother.  because of the wedding massacre.

'burning bears indeed.'  back in a wink. va jra. del hi.
sorry, psalter's dead.  remember the candle.

b.s.:      holy smokes, what if no khandro. what if ffee & you, sweet,
are the bees in the bardo's bonnet?   lo' vueh.


Dear Urze:      yes, dear, I received it also —
a stockgram from Hades.  These are my suspicions.
I believe the Khandro as a girlish prank
was preparing to wire-back out of the Bardo
using Ffee's akashic voice.  Ffee overpowered her
which would explain the three week silence.

Now the Khandro is not truly vulnerable.

Ffee is just a paltry echo
fading in that aspect of her consciousness
we'd call the sylvan fissure.  However,
if he enjoys a rebirth as a human,
god help us all.

Meanwhile, L. must be alarmed
at the uncanniness of midwife Psalter's death.
She's assisted us there in Winslow, Arizona,
just two weeks past.
Your aunt probably thinks the Khandro
doesn't need a Ffee-cleat satan for a companion.  One thing's for sure:

your mother is being reborn in Delhi.  They'll call her Kirsna.
The candle-maker's family
                                                        39, Cottonpet . . .
She will be so powerful this time around
that you may indeed feel her presence
even while she's in her mother's womb.  This is all very wonderful.

Alfred so far has failed
at your aunt's recipe for the butterscotch cookies.
Our water tower is just now leaking
and I must quickly assist him with the repair.
I love the dance of acetylene in the moonlight.
The vapors aren't bad, either. Love.            the Ekajati

Post Script:     Out there in the wind
working the torch with Alfred, I felt a great need
to pray for the dead midwife. A thousand words from the Thödal, etc.

I had a vision of an Indian woman, really a girl,
being prepared, not for the heraldic delivery
of the Ming River valley,
but for one of our lotus births with a heated immersion pool
and stacks of bleaching towels.  The bowl of crushed cloves!

Guru Rinpoche was there
in the heavy presence of his mantra with tendrils of smoke.  Yeshe Soygal
held a burning butter lamp.  More tomorrow . . .                   hung, phet.
I'm glad

I didn't push any of this off to you sooner,
there was another brown-out. Calamity compounded with calamity,
and a cough.                Uncle.


Ekajati:            it's Martha Smythe but you'll contrive
to mark this wire
a Khandro clearing her throat.  (She thanks you
for the vote of confidence
with regard to the terrible Ffee.)  So this is just a packet-wrap
with a jump start
from a dakini in a buddha field.  Just that!

You know, there's a rumor
that you killed the Ffee in a pebble breach
below the mountains?

Paul do you remember the Ash Wednesday disaster
with my little sister. You and I were fifteen.
We were down in the coal room making love, then
rising through the kitchen to an upstairs shower
but reaching the landing
there was Kendra's frail voice asking, "Martha?"

Beside the icebox, we turned —       coal dust on my face and breasts,
menstrual blood on your forehead like an old stamp.
You carried yourself in the manner of the elect
bearing a golden lamp.

Kendra, screaming, ran down the sidewalk
and across the soccer field.  By the time
we were out of a very quick shower,
she was composed and sitting at the kitchen table.
Her feet linked at the ankles, kicking them
to pass the time.  She began
the negotiations
detailing your burden as five dollars a week
and all her algebra assignments.

When I crashed the old red Buick
just a week after mother gave it to us.
Well, my part of the contract fell to you.
That was truly heartless of her.
I was quite awake
going through the windshield. The Coca-Cola sign
growing imminent . . .

We had outrageously good fun.  When I was asked
about the Ffee, they also wondered
about your black arts.  I said, that's forbidden to him!

I said, "The fleur-de-lis is no flower,
it's just a conventionalized bee
with its legs pulled off. Muses can assume
the form of bees."  I explained that's what
you said to me when I asked their very question.
They didn't seem interested.
Then I insisted the Mazda-ffee, that evil Cleat,
was well dead.  I guessed

that he'd rather be in New Philadelphia
with the brillo of a mundane egg
and great distillations of violets and hyssop (purple absinthe
acquired from your father with Hank Olmo's charcoal.)

I explained how once your mother returned from the Gobi
with a watercolor of a horse's testicles
being baked in a double oven
of camel brick or dung.  Wrapped in large leaves
they looked like fossilized dinosaur eggs —  white
peeling to white.
Your family was so kind to me. I send my love.
(Beware.)                  Smythe.

Thank god for small towns in New Hampshire
still burning moss and bituminous sticks.  Thank god
they did have a witch or two.  Thank god
it isn't all just water nukes and water nymphs.  I miss you.


Dear Urze:     well, I know that I've been quiet
for a week.  I had a very disturbing
stockgram from Martha Smythe.
It contains intimate details from our childhood
that I have shared with no one.  The Khandro couldn't
know these things
unless my whole life is utterly transparent to her.  Perhaps

it is simply a cable from 'the Smythe' in paradise?
Furthermore, the Khandro's signature
is nowhere, anymore?

Well, Gregory St. Vith is in bonded exile here.
It will last six years and he is unbelievably
under the registry of the state of New Jersey.

We laugh about this 'til it hurts.  Alfred once, in Gloucester phrasing,
wet himself over it.

St. Vith is a roller of big cigars.  And
a former teacher of our little satan, Ffee:
after the Missouri quake, Ffee's mother —
a 'Born-again' police sergeant and instructor
in water sports — relocates her family
in Denver.

St. Vith is already there with tuberculosis.
The former Harvard professor was now teaching
in a community college licensed under the umbrella
of a ghetto's shopping mall. He says
he was never happier.

He ended up in New Jersey trying
to fix the five state Masonic lottery
while of course escaping — who else? —
the then Justin Ffee, Esquire.

St. Vith insists that our Ffee was a lotus birth,
his mother, once an Olympic swimmer, was addicted
to Guatemalan Pituitrin in an 11% solution.
This was grim
even in the eyes of St. Vith. (They killed
babies to create this drug, mostly in China, Mexico
and Bangladesh.)  Urze-la,

Fee begins life
with an enlarged pituitary body and the great flaccid eyes,
all of him more involved with our moon
than an elephant's menses or the tides.

Urze, I'm trying to be kind here.  But St. Vith confirmed it.
Ffee cut the young Galbraith's throat!
In eleven years that excellent man would have been our President.

The crash of the Spec Airliner 800 was his work also.

In his next life he'll be standing in a silk suit,
his hair silver at forty, a dark green
Mercedes-touring, in Rome.  This photograph
will appear on the front page of the New York Times.  Exactly twenty-

five years later he'll die, at dinner, while visiting the Algonquin.
The great Manhattan champagne fire of '24.

Some will call him Magus-ur.
There's an alarming aside here:

I did dream one winter night,
not long ago, that I was on a yellow pebble breach,
in Montana, wrestling with Alfred,
who looked like Einstein, who became suddenly
an Irish patrolman in a blue vest
named Michael Clare Purseheart.  Then, well,
he turned into Ffee.
In the dream, I did strangle the poor bastard.

There was a lovely stand of aspen
in an easterly wind.  Later, a very blue night!

It was one of those very clear dreams.  I saw his next death.
Did I tell you
he massacred friends of mine at a wedding in Greece?
Ffee's next birth is not lotus —           it's gonna hurt.

The site will be the old city of Philippi.

If this dream had some substance
then the Khandro has given our little company
illusory bodies.
Universal law forbids it.
(Unless we are unconscious
members of the Karma Pakshi Shint.)  Your mother
had this idea once.  She turned green and forgot it.

Oh, hell, it was probably just the noble 'tin-pageant'
doing what he does best.

I detest myself for actually missing
the Khandro's letters to us.
Alfred says I must be a masochist.
And his cookies are still shit.  My love, emaho!        uncle.

Post Script:
I've been thinking about Eta Carinae's homunculus.
Yes, the two heads of cauliflower.  And Balick's rogue comet sailing
out of NGC7606.  Those stellar 'wind fossils'
have always held our galaxy's darkest secret.
The bi-polar dorje nebulae, that's it, I think? More about this tomorrow . . .

If you intend sharing this with your cadet friend
who is a physicist, tell him
to forget it.  It's a lightning bolt for us —

just glamorous barbells for him. Grunt . . .
Well, I'm sorry.          'the Ekajati.'

                                 (.4/.13 nibes.)

Dear Uncle:     this is Urze without 'an inflection of dakinis.'
I will be late for Russian Language Class
if this cable isn't brief.  But my mother
did mention the Karma Pakshi Shint,
and in our underground of cadets, there is some talk.
Marie said
that I should wait until you raised the subject
and only then I might share
with you a small prayer that I obsessed
on as a little girl:


That's it. I do blush.
I might as well tell you also —          the cable
of your shameless adventures with the Smythe . . .     well,
it arrived here Wednesday. Which explains Aunt Laura's silence.
I think she might even be a little jealous.  Of the dead?
What a thing for me to say.

Mother thought that humility was your wild card;
that your temper, when young, was terrifying.
She thought there was no one
more generous on the planet.  (She added,
that's not saying much.)  She once believed you would have six wives?
She guessed you had an addiction.  Or two?
But this was good for you, she surmised.
She insisted I would come to trust you with my life.

Enjoy my little prayer; ha, translate its galactic-celtic, please!
Marie said you spoke it in your sleep
when heavily attended by muses.  She teased
that it was probably just some poetic psycho-dialect.
What are these 'wind-fossils'?

EMAHO, yourself.      The niece.

John, my friend who studies particles,
must know everything about your bi-polar
nebulae. Gasons, batons and quarks?
And frail larks?


Dear Urze:      you do know that the slow-wind is further frustrated
with the opposite spin at a star's interior hydrogen-shellac,
but mostly there's just exceptional mass leaving the star's
equator —     this leads to the dorje, lightning-bolt, nebulae.  They are
all fossils really.  Brodde Bleterum did the classical

description of all this while dying of a gangrenous foot.
He was in a tent near Ulaan-baatar, Mongolia.  His two companions
had gone mad in the first storm.
The event was an eclipse — they were
in the Path of Totality.

Now a comet was collateral to all this —          that fucking
accursed Hale-Bopp was glowing,
zero magnitude, 40 degrees straight above our sun.

So Brodde
broke his leg getting there.  He had two cowards from Princeton
for companions.  The younger was named Kush.
They died of thirst there in all that snow.
Bleterum's sister loved the behemoth, Charles Olson, and

actually died of thirst, in Tunis.  An alcoholic,
she wrote about the human orgasm, rivaling
all texts including my beloveds, Hildegard of Bingen
and Alice B. Toklas.  I knew a great baritone named Toklas.
Georg X. Toklas.

The secret about those wind fossils
is in the electromagnetic folds of these obese solar giants.
Think of them for shamata practice.  The X-rays
alone at the second and fifth cakras.  Corn mush at the third.

Georg X. Toklas was a member of the Pakshi Shint.  Those Fascisti —
who died of nosebleeds up in the grandstand
with the most evil
of the last three flower-Popes? That was Georg X. —          he was doing
some phurba speech while forgetting the exact location
for the Kro'die syllables.  He faked it
and killed them all in twenty minutes.  It was an accident.
He had saved History itself, for our planet,
but wouldn't be consoled.  He was a vegetarian, etc.

The lovely man spent the balance of his life
with lepers in Old Florida.  He finally hung himself,
which, again, is distressingly poor form
for an enlightened being.  The Bodhisattvas, the great ones,

come to assist us, never knowing who they are . . .
This way they climb the bhumis faster.  You will know them
by their petty acts of self-recrimination.  The genius of this path is the
great inversion of silent mother-Talmud:

the 'dajjal' or local anti-christ
in New Havana hated Georg X.  Georg had turned the dajjal's sister
into a laundromat.  Again it was an accident, but as the X. liked
to say, 'it's a very successful laundromat to this day.'

(Ici-ffee would have a fit over these failed quatrains.)

I would love some of that Thousand Flowers honey from Provence —
across whole lifetimes I have sheltered this addiction.  It's great
on hot muffins.

Buffalo Bill Cody was right, "If there is no god, then I am his
prophet."  Love to my niece and the timid aunt.        Ekajati.

I think Georg X. is now a coracle in the deepest assembly of sleep.
I'd feel him if he was here with us.  (The Guru just laughs
and says, "He's the purse, the 'X' and the wat?")
It's a loss.

Did I tell you that yesterday the Hopi
made their annual offering trek of salt, water
and flour.  At the Colorado River, by traditional agreement
the local warden
was to present them with two eagle chicks.

He didn't. It was some sign of the sacred
lunar calendar, perhaps jibes or ibis.

Furthermore, he insulted three female elders.
They said to him four times, this is the completion
of a prophecy.  Greatly saddened, they then turned
and walked away.  The Blue Star Kachina
is secretly a woman now.
She has already begun dancing before europeans
in the central plaza.

My love to you, Urze-la.        Sad uncle.

                                           — space station WGYN.

Urze:              it is just awful.  Alfred went into a diabetic shock
and has died.  He was supposed to jettison my ashes
in the Khandro's jewel-harp, Star field 1nec707. Now,
I'm coming to Earth with his remains.

There's a cave
in north central Tibet and it's mine for the taking.
It's in a desperate wilderness.  The last
cable to Tring wa ka', to our guru, was returned.

I feel he is dead also.  I'm leaving Mars for good.  That last dza
I opened is  the Dza Obum.  I will present it
to the old Arak Tulku.

I'll be in Lhasa by the full moon.  I'll be in Virginia
the following Tuesday.  Love.          Your uncle.

                                           — intelligramme, (WGYN). Urze Ei' Ekajati.

Dear Cadet:    I regret to inform you that your esteemed uncle,
Paul Ekajati, is the victim
of a very focused scripting of this space station.
Your uncle must have been an important gentleman
for they want him immediately out of quarantine
and returned to Earth.  To Geneva.

He is technically dead to us.

He was smoking cigarettes in front of a large office watercooler
just as the script hooked into his brain.
This is an unprecedented strike.
He calls the cooler, 'the Smythe,'
and must be restrained when in the same room with it.

Under instructions from local-cluster doctors we are told
to annihilate 'the Smythe' with your uncle present.
Then massive doses of sodium amyutaol x — for 72 hours.

When we reach your farm in Virginia, he'll seem much older,
depressed, but perhaps oriented in his Ego.

I should report that when your uncle appears less agitated
he is always conversing in Greek
with 'a black mother' who he once insisted
was the goddess of all projected space.

Madame, on the slim chance that he's right about this,
I've shown them both complete respect.
And with reference to the invisible goddess,
this is difficult!

I just pretend that she is the night and about the size
of a watercooler.  Is she a loose thread
from his lost life?  If yes, he may be the first recorded salvage
from a Snakedeath Wreath.  We Marines have

pulled straws to see who would annihilate 'the Smythe.'
I got the shortest of them.  There's something
in your uncle's eyes that hastens me to beg for your prayers.  

Lieutenant Peter Schofelt, Jr.


Lieutenant Schofelt:  do not annihilate the water entity — it may support,
at the very least, the Smythe's psyche.  Tell the physicians
attending my uncle that if they kill the watercooler
they may well end up berry-crepes hurtling in the direction
of the nearest collapsing sun.  Uncle is an advisor
to a distant, beneficent sleep assembly.  Harm nothing!
He's experiencing first love and he had a terrible temper as a child. 
Repeat.  Do not harm 'the Smythe.'
This is my third cable to you in ten minutes?  Will you respond?

By the way, an Ekajati is a Khandro. Yes, lieutenant,
think of the night and then withdraw into your prayers.                Urze Ei' Ekajati.

                                             — in empty lading.

Broadband 3:  we regret a confirmation 'in aspurtive arc'
that the catastrophic script in wreath
has vanished.  First having
destroyed the Universe Plaget.  It has yielded lotus births

for 111 deities —       all other life was lost.  This zone is now called
The Cloud of Hayagriva.  It is off limits to all Marcelots, weavers
and salvages.  Om mani padme hung.  Om mani. . . . .  

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