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ralph robert moore


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ralph robert moore

Copyright © 2015 by Ralph Robert Moore.

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eap: rrm remix
october 1, 2015

Why will you say I heard all things?
I loved the old man, his pale blue eye,
I was never kinder while he slept.
A watch's minute hand moved more quickly
than did mine. I fairly chuckled at the idea.
Many a night, I waited very patiently, it was open,
wide, wide open, and have I not told you
it was the beating of the old man's heart?
No stain of any kind. An end of these labors.
What had I to fear? His treasures, secure, undisturbed.
I brought chairs into the room;
arose and argued about trifles,
and still the men chatted pleasantly.

The thousand inquiries had a weak point,
for he had been drinking much, encrusted with nitre.
No attendants at home. We came together, upon the
damp ground of the catacombs. He raised it to his lips
with a leer. The bells jingled. "Be it so," I said, replacing
the tool beneath my cloak, throwing the links about
his waist. For a brief moment I hesitated. I completed
the eighth, the ninth, the tenth tier. "Let us be gone!"
"Yes," I said. "Let us be gone." "For the love of God, Montresor!"
"Yes, for the love of God!" I plastered it up.

That long agony, how terrible an exaggeration.
The syllables of my name, and I shuddered,
so frail may that web have been, the perfume of some
novel flower. I had swooned, brief, very brief dizziness
of my heart, a strong desire so far I had not opened.
My outstretched hands, confusion, the doom that
had been prepared for me, physical agonies,
its size, inch by inch, swept so closely over me.
I dropped my head back, devoured, cold lips sought my own.
I looked up, shuddering.

Dull, dark, soundless boys. I really knew little of my
childish experiment. I shall perish, thus, thus, and not
otherwise, and laugh--but smile no more. I well remember
our books. I could not help thinking that the lady Madeline
was no more. Small, damp, used. Bitter grief! Ordinary occupations
forgotten through the pauses of the storm.
"And have you not seen it? You must not--You shall not
behold this! Hollow, metallic, and clangorous."

I neither expect nor solicit belief. I married early,
a remarkably large and beautiful animal, entirely
black. I deliberately cut one eye from its socket.
One morning I slipped a noose around its neck and
hung it, because I knew it loved me. The curtains
of my bed were in flames. I continued my caresses,
not exactly a dread, and one day she accompanied me.
I felt no embarrassment whatsoever. Stood
erect before the eyes of the spectators. A dozen
stout arms had seduced me into murder.

Of course I shall not pretend. I was appalled by the
leaden hue. Left lung entirely useless. I spoke
freely. A male and a female nurse were in attendance.
He replied feebly, "Yes, I wish to be mesmerized."
A little before sunrise: "Do you still sleep?"
No longer the faintest sign of vitality.
"Can you explain to us what are your wishes?"
Absolutely bursting from the tongue,
His whole frame crumbled, a liquid mass.

The rules (because there are always rules): each poem/pastiche must harvest its text from a single story, and all of its text must be from that single story (no additional text allowed); each word in a p/p must appear in the same sequential order as it appears in the source text.