from Time Rhyme


Before Olive Oyl, Sweet Pea, Bluto, and Wimpy, there were cave-days on the desolate shore, surf's incessant thunder, Sea Hag's cackle and dirty tricks, cold hours, life-and-death with bald zombies that looked so much like him.  So out of rock soil he scratched a plot for that strange, green leaf.

In Grandfather's barrel, not fish, but a rat.

He went out of his mind while he was quite a young man. He composed continually in the asylum. He used the sheets of music-paper he had written on for a very different purpose and said with a grin of delight, "That's all the works of man are worth."

The windsurfer's board, great, elongated tiddly-wink snapper, marbled in deep orange and black.  For the past hour, he has spent a grand total of ninety seconds on its surface.


Court of Ass-Sizes.

God is the indwelling and not the transient cause of all things.

Doxa is either derived from dioxis (pursuit), and expresses the march of the soul in the pursuit of knowledge, or from the shooting of a bow (toxon); the latter is more likely, and is confirmed by oiesis (thinking), which is only oisis (moving), and implies the movement of the soul to the essential nature of each thing--just as boule (counsel) has to do with shooting (bole); and boulesthai (to wish) combines the notion of aiming and deliberating--all these words seem to follow doxa, and all involve the idea of shooting.

Forsythia-blooms crowd and crown our discontent.

A house-sized garbage truck bangs along its endless route, corner to corner to corner.

Barely reaching from one chrome-edged side to its other, he grapples and rocks the vending machine, rhythm relentless, grating, moon-big, as it tips into his curses, even as it comes over, all the way, to crush everything out of him, right there on the grimy cement.

He regarded himself as bound to her by vows of fidelity and deliberately eluded all temptations. And there were many. Not only at the Opera, but everywhere he went he caused a flutter. He was not in the ordinary sense good-looking, but he had a great fascination.

Once, they returned to the old apartment.  Ghosthunters  --  their job, to find their own weight.

If he should suffer embarrassment, yet still believe, and intercede for Zoar, and ask to be sent to the city of safety, he will find a place where he cannot rest on laurels, where it is too close and small for even the best set of morals.  

The sum of stings of cancelled goals will nightly grow until it explodes, but not kill, the poor face if not for wine's blush  --  volcano allayed to a rose.

His widow strove earnestly to keep up his correspondence.  She wrote, 'Many apologies for our delay.  Regarding your submitted manuscript, our press has ceased operations.  Last month, poor Don was decapitated in a vehicular accident.  I'm sorry that I cannot return all submissions.  Best of luck in placing yours elsewhere.'

We shall apply letters to the expression of objects, either single letters when required, or several letters; and so we shall form syllables, as they are called, and from syllables make nouns and verbs; and thus, at last, from the combinations of nouns and verbs arrive at language, large and fair and whole.

If we conceive that a thing, which is wont to affect us painfully, has any point of resemblance with another thing which is wont to affect us with an equally strong emotion of pleasure, we shall hate the first-named thing, and at the same time we shall love it.

Eye of day, or else true salt of earth.

Stop hangings and fryings for awhile; hold off on the next hot war; sit this waitress down to feast; let kingpins and top-sawyers keep up with her tintinnabulum.

Rhyme  chime.


A small wind over water, their daughter's chatter and rustling crib-play come to them.

Let us suppose a boy imagining a horse, and perceive nothing else.  Inasmuch as this imagination involves the existence of the horse, and the boy does not perceive anything which would exclude the existence of the horse, he will necessarily regard the horse as present: he will not be able to doubt of its existence, although he be not certain thereof.

Surely you do not suppose that you can learn, or I explain, any subject of importance all in a moment; at any rate, not such a subject as language, which is, perhaps, the very greatest of all.

The boy did not understand what was happening in the kitchen; so, without a sound, he backed into the other room.


All realms of apology.

Bats, right; throws, right; smokes, left.

X:  'You're an asshole!'  Y :  'What I...'  X:  'All right, you're not an asshole.  What you said sounded like what an asshole would say.'  Z is their dog.

Row of the tangled beads that grieve.

Cresting fountains rhyme.

In the old African-American cemetery, creamy white gravestones with now green-black lettering:  risen chthonic language.

He later called himself Hans, because it sounded less Jewish.  When he wanted to look smart, he wore a top hat, a flowered waistcoat and white spats. He ran into debt, forged notes and finally had to flee to America.

The differences between the middle and the left and right traces demonstrate that the response to the distractor is much reduced if it is located close to the target in the visual field. Results such as these suggest that lateral interactions within the frontal eye fields enhance the neuronal responses to stimuli that will be selected as saccade targets, and that such interactions suppress the responses to uninteresting and potentially distracting stimuli.

In the mind there is no absolute or free will; but the mind is determined to wish this or that by a cause, which has also been determined by another cause, and this last by another cause, and so on to infinity.


Downstream, a girl up to her waist, her dress flowing out in front.  She looks up in time to see, at a barge's stern, an old man waving a red handkerchief.


This child gushed forth, wild and blue, cord wrapped three times around his neck, but at last clear-thrusting jags of cries, tangled lacings of wailing.

We were on our way to a party hosted by an allergist and a psychiatrist.  It was a misunderstanding:  I had thought she was a physicist, and I had to do a good job hiding my disappointment.  But we enjoyed a sunny afternoon in the country, and ate pretty well.

So I guess our blood and bones all go underground, but then somebody takes off our mouths, so they don't get all the earth in them, and put them up in the sky.  With our ears.  Because we have to hear what our mouths are saying.

Real existence is that for which there is a seeking.

Whoever wants to have children might do well, in my opinion, to choose them from the family of one of his friends. He will thus obtain a child such as he wishes, for he can select the kind he wants. And the one that seems fittest will be most likely to continue in his natural endowment. The difference is that in this way one can take one child out of many who is according to one's liking; but if one begets a child of one's own, the risks are many, for one is bound to accept him as he is.

He stands ankle-deep in the pond's chill, looks out to his father and uncle, treading water.  He can't quite catch what they say.  But their laughs and melodies under senseless words are promises.  He looks out at the bald heads of two small gods.

With the dawn, ten unmilkable carcasses at their metal feeding trough, all hugely, boats aground in muck, bloated dominoes.  But at each end of the ludicrous line, one live bossy calmly waits its breakfast.

There are also extensive studies of human saccadic behaviors during different real-world tasks, such as making a sandwich, fixing a cup of tea, or learning and matching a shape.  Most studies indicate that eye movements are probably made to collect task-relevant information.

With a distant, blue belief, they make their way, lulled by plats and specks of insects breaking on the windshield.

Stand of dead cow corn, swish of the curled, dried leaves.

Through the whole night like that:  standing, arms widespread, grazing fingertips, one with eyes raised into cave's darkness, the other with eyes lowered to ground they can only feel; until, at slightest first gray of dawn, they turn to say they have learned to fill, to know any space.

Beneath the father's fingers, his daughter's forearms.  He barely squeezes to find her little bones, small as a maple's topmost branches, that network of twigs mirroring the network of roots tousling out far into dark soil.  They reach and thin themselves, becoming silky nebulae of tiniest filaments floating nearly free, laved in an element more water, air, or something nameless that will caress her hair and fine light of her bones when they are no longer his, nor even hers.

The object of the idea constituting the human mind is the body.


Y:  'Do you trust me, or not?'  X:  'Yes.'  Y:  'Wait...Yes?'  X:  'Exactly.'  Z is still their dog, but has just run off.

This was the first harrowing experience of his youth. He loved his brother and suffered with him all through his illness. For months he scarcely left his bedside and never tired of telling him stories. To all else he was blind. Indoors and out he lived in a dream; he dreamed his way through family life and childhood.

Herod dines inside collusion's hearse.

Fury so instant, huge, clear sighted, hard, it bursts through glass.  A will like lightning's.  A thousand shards explode  --  water leaping a cataract's verge, seen from a slow distance.


Winter's worth of dust swims in the cottage's air.  And every window the same, lower ledge gnawed jagged.  They find it, finally, in that dark back room.  It is curled, quite properly gray on a red tri-cornered pillow, its squirrel's cheek and flank gone hollow.

When the powerful prevail upon themselves to lend to the indigent, and help them, and benefit them, in this at last is pity, friendship, and mutual aid, harmony among the citizens, an end to isolation, and other blessings such as no man could enumerate.

How can a man say that which is not?--say something and yet say nothing? For is not falsehood saying the thing which is not?  He would be putting himself in motion to no purpose; and that his words would be an unmeaning sound like the noise of hammering at a brazen pot.  The case of language, you see, is different; for when by the help of grammar we assign the letters alpha or beta, or any other letters to a certain name, then, if we add, or subtract, or misplace a letter, the name which is written is not only written wrongly, but not written at all; and in any of these cases becomes other than a name.

Belief, complaint, whispers, loans; how it is even truth.

A hill still rises out there; a river must still wind around pastures; all of it untouched, just the way.

Proper beds chairs, sofas.  How about stairs, anywhere, even one stair, to haul stuff out of the pit?

The one leaving and the one staying.  The one leaving shifts, blurs, and returns, shifted, blurred.  Part of the one having left was left behind, or a small something was brought back.  The one having stayed must revise, must, because both must eat.

It is in the nature of reason to perceive things under a certain form of eternity.


To live badly is to spend a long time dying.

One's work in the world  --  an office, desk, in a room, ceiling high and white; screens, messages to pass along; messages make meanings; letters, one letter at a time placed, hung on a hook of its own, such black against such white.  Such musings.

Prayer-rot lines every conversion's curse.

Eyes pulling spine, which draws torso, head, up through electric night, until, come level with a mirror, eyes stare into eyes bright with burning, set in a face distorted by its scream, that red hole.

They fit in nowhere and keep trying to come back, to say they don't deserve twenty mortal murders, not they, who always kept consciences clear though half believing prophecies.

Still to see, to hear, things all untouchable beyond this cruelly perfect glass.  And taste?  --  a uniform, metallic smear.

Inadequate and confused ideas follow by the same necessity, as adequate or clear and distinct ideas.

In after years he reproached himself, as though he were partly to blame for her unhappiness, because he was too young and ignorant of life to know what went on in his home.

Allowed to go on like this, ready to give back, hauling ourselves and what's left, each time sorting, unsorting, at their beholding, having to share if that's what it's called.  To go down there, to separate ours from theirs, ours from theirs, because they'll want it all back.

Inhabiting has to be a truth; permission has to be allowed.  Eyes meeting, pulling clarity from another's mind.

Machine so brave, reliable, that the dagger earlier cleaned and placed can be raised again.

It has often been demonstrated that we do not grasp how each thing is or is not. Sweet exists by convention, bitter by convention, color by convention. Atoms and void alone exist in reality.

More men become good through practice than by nature.

That morning off the Irish coast the jade sea's breath curled up the dinghy's sides and floated, silken veils, towards the island, where three hundred seals moaned their cat-gut joys.

Each pair of needle-linked dragonfly lovers is shaped like a blue goalpost, broken, slightly tilted, or a country mailbox filled with outgoing messages, its flag-arm raised, quivering in every breeze.

'I-n-c-a-d-e-s-c-e-n-t.'  Letter by letter, again, slowly.  'I-n-c-a-n-e-s-s-e-n-c-e.'  Slowly, look again.  'Incandescence.'


     Joel Chace 2015