Wednesday, December 14, 2011

With All The Slimy Bases Covered A Review of : Tales From A French Envelope (Catfish McDaris & Craig Scott) By: Frankie Metro

… If money is an iguana eating a jackalope, as Catfish Mcdaris suggests in the short prose piece: Jackalope Condoms, then free books are either named Ana or Jack, and have furry horns sprouting from their scaley spines. Allow me first off, to thank Craig Scott for the new bundle of joy I received in the mail today. Children like this live in the French Envelope Catfish & Craig left out to dry in the deserts of the Independent Press Community.

Warning: Don’t approach this book looking for new spiritual landscapes or cognitive plateaus. Instead, floss your gums regularly, start now if you have to, and be open to a series of prods and pokes.

As you progress, there is a pungent smell of burning meat, or a burning sensation, possibly in the pubic zone if you’re that type of person, that follows you around the house, even after you put the book down. Sometimes the meat is sweetly rancid:

Deep & Deeper

“The Commanche was fanning that burning meat and chanting. Before long I felt this strange sensation. You know how your hemmorhoids burn, after too many hot peppers? That’s about as close as I can come to an explanation…”

Sometimes the burning is painfully familiar:

Fuck You

I’m a suicide.
You’re my letter.

You don’t care for responsibility.
You never inform the authorities
of my death.
You meet some douchebag in a bar and
elope to Vegas.

My bones mail you
my middle finger.

Catfish McDaris’ poem:

Willy Gets Chilly

is like a stash of retrospection, finally discovered bobbing along in the reservoir of your toilet, or a dopemine rush that’s justified, tried and true.

Creepy Uncle Willy was the last resort,
but my parents had to go to a funeral,
getting into my pajamas, I noticed girlie
books in the bathroom, I was soon
walking the monkey, Uncle Willy yelled

You naughty boy, now I’m going to spank you…

Blood exploded from his nose & his eyeballs
rolled white like hard boiled eggs, the cops
came & called my folks…

Everyone’s heard the creepy Uncle story; some have written the creepy Uncle poem; (C.M.) exorcises the creepy Uncle demons:

…the preacher asked if anyone
wanted to say a few words, I stood & said
he was right, it did hurt him more than me.

Page 43’s poem:

Godzilla Doesn’t Play Butler

makes the completely ludicrous seem completely feasible, and not only that but also tactfully orchestrated:

I took off all my
clothes & stroked
my lizard until it
resembled Godzilla
stomping Tokyo

Walking into the living
room I set the cake
on the coffee table
I heard a woman
say “Damn”

I asked “Anyone
want meat with
their cake?” a few
hands went up…

while Catfish’s: Tiger Skin Blues is a place where the only difference between magic squirrels and tree rats is the size of your twig & berries:

“Cruz’s heart was broken into a million pieces. Her tears could’ve filled the Gulf of México. Antonio couldn’t survive on ordinary cat food; he hit his eighth life quick. Cruz had him made into a rug and there she slept, until she died of boredom and a lonely heart.”

Ah, Southwest Catfish Cassady & The Bob Dylan Pig Truck Blues…Catfish seems to always be in a race with death; not the death of the body, but the death of the self-image, immersing himself in pig shit and hot sauce on occassion, and hauling ass to Tucumcari or bust.

Taking Down The Shakedown

is vigilante justice/México City standoffs on public transit/bagmen/cold earth/a hot day/and no supervision:

The México City pickpockets
worked the luxury buses in
wolf packs, razor blades
concealed between fingers

Swift dips of eagle talons
into purses & wallets,
handing off to second men
the watchers ever vigilant…

On page 55, you find that

There’s No Cure For True Love

and this is an adverse reaction to domestication; an unspayed, unneutered, ill-tempered jackalope, with two hyper-active sex organs, who cares nothing about the topic:

“You ask what would reduce a man to such worm like behavior? Did she have beauty, intelligence, a great body, a pleasant personality? No, an emphatic no, to any of those good qualities. She was a cunt in every sense of the word. She squandered his hard earned money, cheated with every man stupid enough to screw her. She had body odor and bad breath…”

When you’re finally:

Face To Face

with his contribution to this book, the color coated, hairy flavored slime trail it’s left on your tongue is hard to describe, but in the company of Catfish, you find out Jeffrey Dahmer’s been standing across the page, and you’ve traveled just a stanza or one paragraph too far down a dark alley.
* * *

You turn the corner, and Craig Scott’s portion starts off like a free dance at the strip-bar, followed by a private show wth no panties or bra.

The poem:

Bachelor Party Guidelines

reads as a continuously revised string of advice, completely unheeded of course, but unabashedly acknowledged all the same:

You can impregnate,
but make sure it doesn’t
come to term.

You can bring it to term,
but don’t claim it
as your own.

You can claim it as your own,
but don’t spend any time
with it…

The Other

is a full scale model of the late Todd Moore in drag, a hairy kneed poem with silk stockings and a .38 Snub-Nose…holy, ripped, ready for action:

was too
at Petal’s
to notice
her pulling
the 38
out from
the pillow.
One was
the size of
the other.
Her nipples
got hard
when she
shot him
in the

Craig seems to pry his characters from the steel reinforced confines of oversized tuna cans in some instances; cans containing wet pink flesh, cans with serrated chew marks on the label, cans with chunks of stem cells… chaotic, suck-fucking hybrids that blame their idle hands, which never fully developed.

He sleeps with would-be assassins when The End is near:

“My left eye feels like a balloon filling with water. We fight and fuck and ignore the cat vomit in the bed…”

giving them the choice of either the crow’s nest or the wet spot in the bed.

By the time you’re left with the question:

(pg. 156)

she is the only answer you have left:

why is it
she’s had tits since 12
known how to suck a dick since 13
how to eat pussy since 9…

why is it
you haven’t known her forever
but yet you have

She is tucked neatly at the slimy base of a French Envelope. There is still time to save her, before the glue really dries…

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