One of the Opinions in the Life of Thomas Sarebbononnato [Flash Fiction]

In order to keep their sanity, Russians from the Soviet Union had deep and serious discussions about serious and deep subjects. In order to save their lives, they orchestrated never reaching any serious conclusions.

I might say something similar to and about Americans, almost; however, it is not about saving their lives that leads them to draw no conclusions of any seriousness; but since having reached the culturally unilateral conclusion that Doubt is the highest wisdom, and Truth is a lie and that there are no absolutes of any kind, Americans talk and talk and talk about evertything, especially serious subjects, and get nowhere, intellectually, spiritually, practically, concluding nothing of any worth, upholding the dogma that knowledge is impossible and that the man or woman who does know anything must always be suspected and vilified if possible, or necessary, the latter always arising in a culture ruled by superstition and mysticism when not outright mystery and the power of feeling or emotion, the latter perpetually linked with com-motion, either motion always other than both passion and compassion. . .


A Personal Note


Without coffee, my morning is terrible, has become my cliche.

To believe her bridge too classical, she insisted I should know . . .

What was it that I should know?

I should look at the pictures painted on Greek vases,

She said one if her teachers had said, and so then should I.

We pause to look at a variety of vases

Among the collection of Greek pottery at the Met.

A profile too classical, I thought.

She said that no one she knows has her nose.

Beautiful I thought, seeing her seeing me–

I watched her obliquely.

I fell headlong into her eyes.

Something smaller this time,

Not a stone, no stone, into the waves,

A pebble, I toss.

What would it mean to be-go,

All of what has been considered between . . .

To be-gone, to be-come, to be-have.

Theme in Variegation


More to be, what I repeat is not what I am.

What I think I become is not what I become . . .

Not to be is not to be–whenever I am, I am not . . . what I become.

Words alone are nearly alone,

What we say we have said, all saying, repeating,

I know nothing given but what is received.



Leaves in the fall fall–

Another kind of tautology–

Not exactly how mops mop,


Truth beseeches; lies do not.

Lying is action;

Truth is being.


I imagine myself another man;

I imagine you the same woman.

It does not work out.



I feel guilty.

I see me the same–I . . .

I imagine you another other than who you have been,

Who or what you could become–

What is it I say about how we are?


In the next wake, I hold you up.

I stand behind you.

A piece of colored glass, wave-worn smooth,

Cracked shells are tiny,

All of them spread in a wide array on the rough sand of the surf beneath my feet.


I skip another stone.

You are, I say;

Therefore, I am.



Wet sands.

Your feet disappearing in the soft of the sands

Below the tumult of the surf.

I sink as I try to stand upright.


I watch you watching them,

The waves.

I see you totter.

You do not stumble as I do

Thinking I want to reach out to you.

In the Name of the Dreamer

I dream a dream where in the dream I have dreamed you are dreaming of having put away a dream for a rainy day, another time when Death might visit.

I recall having reminded you that you had remembered having been told by someone I had never met that rain in a dream is a purgation image.

It does not rain in my dreams, I tell you. There are no incidental images in poems as there are none in dreams, as everything in the frame of a film adds up to make meaning.

I searched for you in other dreams I had never told you anything about. I have wondered if we do not confuse looking for Death with looking for God.


I look for you in my dreams, she says (he imagines).

When aware I walk in them alone–unaware

I persist in trying to reach out

to touch you–

all around me silhouettes move about.

I want no more than to find you waiting for me

in my dreams, he imagines she says,

I say, wondering myself how you said

you dreamed of me

before having met me, 

or so I imagine you asking me 

how I could have escaped from your dreams.