‘A cold?’ I asked, as we ascended
toward some beastly clouds, their fattened,
beat-up faces, swollen, blackened
eyes and puce contusions blended
in each enormous, lumpish head.
‘No. Just allergies,’ she said.
O reader, I’ve always loathed
that B-grade trick, where women clothed
as men in ﬁlms – and often riding
motorcycles – are really hiding
in helmets, or hooded winter-wear,
great tresses of Rapunzaline hair.
But I’m no Peter Jackson.50 And may
whoever ﬁlms this docu-poem
be as good as he is – or know him,
at least, to make producers pay.
For you’ll need special effects beyond
what any software yet has spawned
– and not just for the seething sky
I mentioned above, or to supply,
in open sea, the tiny islet
which my helicopter pilot
struggles to ﬁnd. But wait til you see
the marvels in my Canto Three!
Now back to Megan – for that’s her name,
(though soon I’ll call her Copter Meg;
and once, while riﬂing through her bag
of nasal sprays, she made the claim
she was a ‘crazy, crack-brained sort’.
So soon I’ll call her ‘Nutmeg’ for short.)
A ﬂeshy, big-boned curio,
Canadian, part Eskimo,
she stole her features from the kind
of shop our regal tourists ﬁnd
along our city’s queenly strand51
– all polished goods and carved by hand.
Her long smooth hair of Asian teak,
its grain deﬁned in rippling rows;
a curvy Teko-Teko nose;52
a whalebone chin and Patu53 cheeks.
And let me not forget to speak
about her eyes (which strain to seek
out calmer skies) – the brows of jet
like peacock plumes in silhouette,
or clashing ﬁsts above two orbs
so dark they managed to absorb
and trap within her heavy lashes
several nearby lightning ﬂashes.
And let me not forget her breasts!
For just as Tolstoy loved girls’ feet,
divine Nabokov the furry sheathe
of armpits, I’m more common – impressed
by that which every barman knows
can ﬁll a house, and if he chose,
a stadium! Indeed, as Janet
showed before TV could ban it,54
a breast can change a nation’s fate!
O strange America! You rate
your game a ‘family show’ – while leering
at ads for beer and damsels cheering.
O blessed are you, you lecherous lot!
I sing to all the beer-drinking masses,
the ones who don’t care what ‘high class’ is;
the ones who think that J-Lo’s not
a diva – but her ass is.55 Bring me
your footy fans, in hordes or singly;
the sooty men with sports-car tools,
the speedway goers, sports-bar ghouls,
your schools of bikers and monster truckers
for whom the greatest nippers and tuckers
work to perfect the silicon breast
for you to visually molest!
50 Academy award-winning New Zealand ﬁlm director, born 1961.
51 Queen Street is the central street of Auckland’s central business district. It rises from Queen’s Wharf on the waterfront and extends uphill for almost three kilometers in a mostly straight south-southwesterly direction. The street is ﬁlled with shops selling popular souvenir items such as Maori carvings, black pearls, honey and kiwifruit products, paua shells, rugby shirts, greenstone and sheepskins.
52 A Maori ﬁgurine commemorating ancestors or used as a protection from evil, usually of a curvaceous shape, with bulging belly, squat legs, outstretched tongue.
53 A wide, usually smooth (but sometimes ornamented), Maori blade, often carved of greenstone, wood or whalebone and used as a weapon.
54 During the halftime show of America’s Superbowl gridiron match in January, 2004, the pop singer Janet Jackson’s right breast was bared on live television.
55 J-Lo, or Jennifer Lopez, is a popular singer and actress in America whose alluring haunches, according to the Sunday Observer of London, have been insured for US$1 million.Zireaux’s comments on these stanzas
The girl’s feet adored by Tolstoy, the furry axilla described by Nabokov — and what about the breast? Our narrator Arcady would find a soulmate in the 17th century poet, Robert Herrick:
Upon Julia’s Breasts
Display thy breasts, my Julia—there let me
Behold that circummortal purity,
Between whose glories there my lips I’ll lay,
Ravish’d in that fair via lactea.
– Robert Herrick, The Hesperides, 1648
A remarkable little stanza, in which Julia’s breasts become cosmic spheres, as vast and timeless as the Milky Way (via lactea). “Circummortal” is Herrick’s own, if somewhat oversized, neologism, and we must admire a poet who draws new vocabulary from his beauty’s teat.
Herrick sings often of his Julia in The Hersperides. The name Julia itself is youthful, brimming, ebullient, circummortal. From Shakespeare to Sacha Baron Cohen, the name has kept its connotations. Here’s the brilliant Cohen character, Ali. G, singing about “me Julie.”
From the song “Me Julie,” by Ali G. and Shaggy:
You got your Julie, I got my Julie.
Anybody else who don’t have a Julie needs to get one.
Julie, you know I love you
From me head down to my
You turn me on with your big Babylons.
My readers will recall that I’ve addressed the poetic beauty of breasts (and the origins of mazophilia) in previous posts: the “large unruly orbs” of Mary McCallum’s “Pink T-Shirt,” and, most scientifically, the “Big Hips and Breasts” of Kamal.