Monthly Archives: February 2007

Thanotourism: A Cautionary Tale

The Hare learns of himself chiefly by watching others. This  scopophilic philosophy, which he tours around the world as a self-help regime,  has gained him international recognition. One of The Hare’s most famous clients was Andy Williams, whom he inspired to write the song, “Music To Watch Girls By”. To this day, all proceeds from the song go to The Hare and his controversial “marshmallow” fund.

It is not unusual for The Hare’s daily expeditions to bring back a bad memory; we are all familiar with the phrase “Look what The Hare brought home”. Today was no exception.

Situated in text-book “stake-out” style, outside the Church of St. Christoph, the Hare saw a woman enter. Her vacant, blue-sky eyes and mousy demeanor were strangely familiar to him. He followed her into the church, took a pew at the back, and began to chant the first thing he could think of.

 He took a picture of her with his Instamatic, and sent it to me via messenger-pig, before taking some candles and donning a green vestment, in order to leave inconspicuously.

The pig arrived at an inopportune time, when I was preparing dinner. I reasoned with the pig, saying I would never eat a messenger. He reluctantly gave up the photo.

A long time ago, there was an amusement park, for the kind of folks who are not easily amused by “Big Dippers”, “Bottlecorks”, plastic swans or singing pirates. I thought better than to bore my punters with such frivolity devoid of thrills, so I poured almost all of my capital into the building of a single roller-coaster.

Many roller-coasters tease their riders with the possibility of death, but mine had coffins for cars, each one containing an actual corpse. Never before had the roller-coaster enthusiast been confronted so vividly with the fact of their mortality. For some it was an erotic experience, for others, religious. Some just came for curiosity’s sake.

For many the park was a taster course in the afterlife. How they expected me to provide this I don’t know but – supply and demand – i gave them what I could, and whatever it was would be enough…fibreglass structures of various Gods, sprayed alternately gold and coal-black;  crisp, clean crystal structures made of windows, made of sky. From here, visitors could, if they so wished, get a God’s-eye-view of-Heaven, where fake eagles would sore and speakers would play the park’s anthem.

So, you see, death can be clean.

I looked out to watch the spotlights trace the clouds on a gloomy, profitable Tuesday. I watched the long lines of ant-people – tickets in hand – dressing, undressing, looking distraught, happy or uncomfortable.  My office was dusty, and suffocating. I opened the window and had to stop myself from falling.

With a knock at the door, enough to dislodge it from it’s hinges, the woman lunged at me, and held me out the window by my legs.  Any moment then I could have been caught in the queue below me, without a ticket.

 “YOU HAVE MY HUSBAND!”

*he…he’s in God’s hands now…”

BULLSHIT! HE’S DOING THE LOOP-THE-LOOP UP THERE RIGHT NOW!”

“That’s one way of putting it”, I said, “It’s what he would have wanted”

“HOW DO YOU KNOW WHAT HE WANTS!?!”

 “Ditto. It’s what he signed for”

“He didn’t sign for anything”

“Life Insurance. He’s Guaranteed a good time!”

I made a pretty picture on the pavement, and ticket sales have more than tripled.  Now I’m riding in car number 32.  All the TV cameras were there. I was not the kind of interviewee they were used to.

 I always said I’d die before I sold out.

– Peter

See: Theme Park

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The Peter Post – If Your Name Is Peter, Comment Here

This is a song that The Hare has composed in collaboration with Clint Mansell, in honour of Peters everywhere. If you are a Peter, feel free to add a verse in the comments field, and/or adopt it as your personal Anthem. 

(to be played on ukulele, drums and accordion)

Peter,

Peter,

like a brook or a river?

Born on a Tuesday,

To a mother –

never sweeter.

Continue reading The Peter Post – If Your Name Is Peter, Comment Here

Pusscat by Anna Akhmatova

Pusscat, watch out, an embroidered owl
Scowls from a pillow on the bed,
Grey Miss Pusscat, please don’t growl,
Granddad will hear what you just said.
Nanny, this candle isn’t lit,
Mice can nibble me if they try.
That dratted owl, I’m afraid of it,
Who embroidered him and why?

Source: Waters, Fiona (ed.) Poems from Many Cultures (London: Evans Brothers Limited, 2005) p. 88

The Hare, Elsewhere

It seems as if the Hare has embraced the Internet with more gusto than I was first lead to believe. He knows very well how to coax information out of a mouse, and has made many friends on the “Information-Super-Road”. Off course, they are not really his friends. Silly Hare!

Some sightings of The Hare, Elsewhere:

An artist called Karen Croner has fashioned sculptures depicting the The Hare and his many victories in the battle of against the Tyrannical Rabbits and The Politically-Neutral Cayotes .

Fig. 1: Sow Re-inforcements

Fig. 2: The Hare Fearlessly Confronts a Cayote Infedel, and Wins.

 Fig. 3: “The Milky Bars are on me!” – The Hare fights them on the beaches.

Earth Art International offers the following wisdom. It is so generally reliable that it could have come from Warne’s Miscellany. These must be the words of  some kind of prophet – a sensitive tentacle, firmly atuned to the piano music of the Earth.

Whisper this in candlelight:

“Hare is crouching silently. If you want to avoid being seen, learn from Hare’s special strengths. Taking flight in the center is Raven, whisping by the tiny chipmunk. Fox is peering out of Hare’s thoughts keeping her always alert. The courageous and curious Raccoon invites a kiss from Butterfly. Also hidden in the deep woods is Green Wolf, transforming to sprouting foliage. Be like Hare, and enjoy the stillness in the greenery of nature as she awaits opportunity. Ladybug in flight brings happiness and good luck!”

There’s this picture, which probably says all that and more:

Also, you might like to know that The Hare is featured on the cover of “!%@:: A Directory of Electronic Mail Addressing & Networks”.

It has new lay-flat binding, which is sure to please even the fussiest of children. This website tells you all you need to know:

  • When chased, The Hare relies on speed and sudden changes in direction (called “jinking”) to elude pursuers.

  • Wide-set eyes give him visions.

  • The Hare occupies open country, and is mainly solitary except during breeding season.

  • His pre-mating antics include “bucking”. His mating antics include “fucking”.

  • The phrase “mad as a march hare” was invented by The Hare’s poet-in-residence, as an April Fool’s joke.

  • “Michael Kalantarian” is an awesome name.

Has your browser been hijacked by Hare-ware? Has a vision of The Hare appeared to you in an electric dream? Send us your sightings at peterandthehare[at]lycos.co.uk

 

Theme Park

Reader,

While I urge you to comment on any of my poems. I humbly beseech you pay special attention to the following piece, which is a lame dog that needs shooting, if not rewriting. It would do me no pleasure to shoot a dog; if the weather was right, the sun was low and the sky was the right shade, then, yes, your common-or-garden dog slaying might indeed be of some aesthetic appeal, but The Hare likes animals. Not dogs, espeicially, but he likes hares.

So anyway, yeah, feedback please. 😀

Theme Park

A meeting of
likeminded friends
convene in Dino World.
for burgers.

Unimpressed,
sat next to the Waltzers,
Sipping drinks,
We keep ourselves grounded.

Introducing the juice of meat
to my tastebuds; timidly at first –
to see how they spin –
the lights give me a headache
that I know won’t shift
until I’m home.

I began the storytelling
with one I half remembered
about my phobia of animatronics
and fear of heights.

Someone said they found dinosaurs creepy
and stared at their shoes.

The excitement of this awkward moment
is quite enough for us, you see.

We permit ourselves
to feel ridiculous.
Our money paid up,
our permission to ride.

Flu Circles

The sailor peaks up from his submarine
gasping,
feeling dismayed by the quality of air.

On the farmer’s wife’s nose
a moisture conspires.
The farmer’s dog lies
already sick with the flu.

The bug catches cold
as a girl catches insects.
The girl catches her death
late at night
on a boat.

In a dream
I was struck by
a bout of the sneezes.
In the morning I awoke
with a palm around my throat.

It is not Christmas

Feathers moistened with the dew of the morning
are mistaken for snowflakes
by the chickens of the barn.

Three clucks mean “yes”,
and the cock crows with excitement,
and somewhere in the suburbs,
three children storm downstairs.

“Christmas has come early!”
said the postman,
his nose reddened,
as he handed out a month’s worth
of fast-food leaflets,
and gas bills.