Raksha (Jungle Books)

29 Apr

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i play Louis Prima at dinner
fusilli red sauce and red wine and i tell her
this guy singing hear this guy singing that ol’ black magic?
listen
hear him?
this guy singing this is King Louie
in your movie
that big galoot
she says laughing
she loves new words like
galoot
bamboozled
and the new nickname i stole and gave her:
Madame Tutli Putli
no the other one she says say the other one
Trini Peperoncini
aah hahahaha
who’s your favorite from the jungle book Trini?
Kaa
seriously not Mowgli?
no
Kaa
why
he’s a scoundrel!
he’s a charmer
yea and a scoundrel
for an odd reason
the ferrous taste of liver
sneaks into my mouth from the back of the throat
and i am reminded of Charlie Chaplin
eating the soles of his shoes in Gold Rush
When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains
and the women come out to cut up what remains
jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
and go to your gawd like a soldier

what the heck was that she says
blow out your brains?
nothing Madame Tutli Putli
eat your liver

(Author’s Notes)

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7 Responses to “Raksha (Jungle Books)”

  1. Rodger Jacobs 30/04/2009 at 2:44 PM #

    Very nice indeed. On my office wall, in a plexiglass box frame, is a family photo that I cherish of my grandparents flanked by a widely-smiling man wearing a red bandana, neatly pressed white slacks and a Hawaiian shirt. His face is tanned as brown as waxed wood and he is clutching a highball in one strong hand. My grandparents are smiling straight into the camera but the big man is looking off in his laughter, probably reacting to some wise crack one of my grandparents made. I think the year is 1973 or 1974 because I do have a vague recollection of the day that Polaroid was snapped at the American mobile home community on the rocky beach in Ensenada, Mexico. The big man was their neighbor in the summer exile for American expats in Ensenada and Baja, and I was proud to tell my school chums when I returned home that fall that my grandparents were friends with the voice of Balloo himself, Mr. Phil Harris.

    I cherish that photo. All three of the subjects are dust now, of course, making it all the more poignant.

    Fuck.

    Now I’m depressed.

  2. Rodger Jacobs 30/04/2009 at 3:08 PM #

    Forgot to mention that the Polaroid bears Phil’s signature on the bottom white border.

  3. Mike Camel 30/04/2009 at 3:31 PM #

    I like Kaa best too

  4. Mike Camel 30/04/2009 at 3:32 PM #

    Wow it always gives me the same monster! I’ve been assigned a green googly-eyed one! Wicked!

  5. Mike Camel 30/04/2009 at 4:07 PM #

    Ah and I like Kipling’s verses no matter what anyone goddamn says. Maybe ’cause I was brought up on Raj nostalgia in very Kipling-esque surroundings. The four lines you got there have returned to fame since the Brits got involved in Afghanistan (again…) Every goddamn British officer will have been quoted them before heading off. Another big favourite is ‘Arithmetic on the Frontier’ (“…a scrimmage in a Border Station / A canter down some dark defile / Two thousand pounds of education / Drops to a ten-rupee jezail…”)

  6. (S)wine 30/04/2009 at 11:23 PM #

    word. all.

  7. momentofchoice 01/05/2009 at 6:17 AM #

    Great story Rodger.

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