Life as it ain't

"I'm not really from outer space. I'm just mentally divergent."

The King of the Log

Posted by Ronak M Soni on November 3, 2009

Sorry that this is under poetry, but I like to think of this as a prose poem.

Yet again, all constructive criticism/clicking on thumbs will be appreciated.

I stopped. It had been a long run. Now came the hard part. I had woken up at five in the morning and gone for a ten kilometer run. Now, my eyelids drooped, the film of adhesive between my eyelids getting to work.
I heard the wet sand crunching under my shoes, the calls of early morning birds. The wind blowing my hair into my face, I stumbled over a root: my lids had drooped to below my irises.
The lovely, cool wind slipped under my t-shirt and raised every little hair, leaving with the sweat that stuck it to my body. I pulled my eyes open against the dark, magnetic pull.
The sleepy feel of debris under my eyes – that patched inoffensive film of it that called for sleep – weighed my head down, bent my back, buckled my knees, pushed me all the way down.
I got up, sweaty as well as dirty. Jolted awake, the tears came to my eyes, dissolving up the adhesive, the debris, blotting my sight. I rapidly blinked to clear my eyes. And smiled: we primates tend to rule.
For, in front of me, on a log, sat a monkey, his right knee next to his face, his forearm hanging off it, and his other hand feeding himself; for, in front of me, on a log, sat its king.

I stopped. It had been a long run. Now came the hard part. I had woken up at five in the morning and gone for a ten kilometer run. Now, my eyelids drooped, the film of adhesive between my eyelids getting to work.
I heard the wet sand crunching under my shoes, the calls of early morning birds. The wind blowing my hair into my face, I stumbledover a root: my lids had drooped to below my ires.
The lovely, cool wind slipped under my t-shirt and raised every little hair, leaving with the sweat that stuck each one to my body. I pulled my eyes open against the dark, magnetic pull.
The sleepy feel of debris under my eyes – that patched inoffensive film of it that called for sleep – weighed my head down, bent my back, buckled my knees, pushed me all the way down.
I got up, sweaty as well as dirty. Jolted awake, the tears came to my eyes, dissolving up the adhesive, the debris, blotting my sight. I rapidly blinked to clear my eyes. And smiled: us primates tend to rule.
For, in front of me, on a log, sat a monkey, his right knee next to his face, his forearm hanging off it, and his other hand feeding himself; for, in front of me, on his kingdom, sat the king of the log.
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5 Responses to “The King of the Log”

  1. Two minor quibbles: What is “ires” (did you mean “irises”)? Also, the line should read “we primates tend to rule,” not “us.” Not only is it grammatically incorrect, but notice the flow of “e’s” when “we” is used instead of “us?” Much more pleasing to the eye, the sentence flows better, and it’s grammatically correct (grammar can be ignored, but there should be a reason for it, just as there should be a reason for when it’s followed). 🙂

    As for the rest, the imagery is fantastic. I especially like these lines: “I pulled my eyes open against the dark, magnetic pull,” “that patched inoffensive film,” “dissolving up the adhesive,” and the image of the monkey sitting on a log, especially the details of his pose. “In front of me, on a log, sat its king” indeed.

    • Thanks. A lot.

      “us” corrected to “we”. These things escape one sometimes.
      I always thought the plural of “iris” was “ires”. Thanks for pointing it out. I’d like to ask your opinion: “irises” or “irides”? Neither sounds as good as “ires”, but obviously that’s unintelligible. (Personally, I’m leaning to “irides”, but you’ve got to be careful with these things.)

      PS: With a three hundred-word piece, there is no such thing as a ‘minor’ quibble. One wrong word, and you don’t have time to recover the mood.

  2. True, true. Minor quibbles in poetry are always major.

    I’ve never heard of irides (sounds like “eyelids?”), but lips drooping below your irises? Not sure if that’s the image you’re looking for, or the right sound. What effect are you going for with the final word in that sentence?

    • ‘Irides’ is the other plural of ‘iris’. The line is actually “lids had drooped to below my irises” (the ‘to’ is rather important, because it implies a finished act of having drooped rather than an ongoing one). That’s there because if my lids have drooped to below my irises I can’t see anymore.
      I’m not so much going for an effect with it as trying to keep it within the voice while conveying the action, you know.

      PS: I’ve changed it to “irises” based on your reaction. Sounds pretty good, I see now.

  3. Acai girl said

    Sorry, but can you explain further.

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