by Denise Duhamel & Maureen Seaton
Gullible Gulliver hadn't a clue-
those gossamer threads and tiny arrows
pricked his skin like the hungriest sparrows.
Lilliputian cows were ground into burgers
smaller than dimes and nickels, the emperor's
family jewels. Gulliver only pretended
he liked rope-dancing and used threads
of Garter-blue, Bath-red and Thistle-green
to weave a giant cat's-eye trampoline,
friend of any ugly king. Big Endians
enjoyed freedom-of-egg-eating in
Belfuscu, the omelette capital of yolk-
torn Europe, little cracked kingdom of just folks,
the giant sailing away in the shoe.
The BO of giants was too much
for a tiny human nose. The king's pores,
dank cavernous excavations, floored
Gulliver. The king's stray hairs threatened to hang
him or strangle him in sleep. Brobdingnag
pot holes were canyons. A piece of buttered toast
could flatten an Englishman boasting
of gunpowder and the plusses of slavery.
When Gulliver went home, British bravery
was a sham. Gulliver's neighbors were midgets.
In fact, Englishmen were toys or gadgets
in the Brobdingnagian's gentle hands.
Gulliver fell into the king's fate line, ran
for years, the giant barely aware of his touch.
The flying island of math and music
hung like a huge blue cloud, a treble clef,
a pi in the sky arousing berefit
Gulliver to new scatological hope.
Cucumber sunlight and hairless sheep groped
his imagination like a cheating wife.
Of all the awesome practices he'd denied
himself, sex was the one he most ignored.
He fantasized about the whole-note pork
and yams chopped into plus signs in Laputa,
servants smacking masters out of comas
with bladders tied to the tips of switches.
All Laputans lived tax free, bewitching
the planets--ethereal, mystic.
If Yahoos in England castrated Houyhnhnms
why couldn't Houyhnhnms castrate Yahoos?
Before horses were made into glue,
when God spoke Dutch and German and Spanish,
and half-horse half-human centaurs vanished
into mythos never to spawn again,
Houyhnhnms didn't know greed or temptation.
"What's a lie again?" they asked, their equine eyes
wide or narrow with innocence, an icy-
cold reason like Adam saying no, no, no
to the luscious Yahoo who didn't wear clothes
and jiggled her hips. Gulliver hid
behind a fortunate fig leaf and trembled,
grabbed his pants as she shouted, "What a man!"
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