The Last Surrealist
In a Second Life temple of lens
the last surrealist dresses in meadowsweet
goldenrod, milkweed; a disco ball bra
topped with an imperial telephone hat
dictates the autobiography of a tattoo:
Confess to yourself that you
would die if you were forbidden to write.
The last surrealist adds a joke, a gag
a black liver bag; adds a gag, a joke
a Hitler-youth Pope hand-printed
on a wealth victim’s sequined hospital
smock, a veil of lace surgical gauze
draped across a novocaine cheek
above a neck adorned by heart-shaped
candies on edible string.
The last surrealist in a blown
condom bubble dress with matching
Grand Piano issues directives
to her little monsters: Forget Grey Lynn.
Forget New Jersey. Unlock the gates
to the adventure playground.
On a black chaise-longue a teacher and
a merchant banker sit, ear buds in, sound
down, a single bare bulb illuminates
their hand-held HD camcorders fixed on stock
figures scrolling across the Blackberry
in the palm of the last surrealist.
LISTEN to ‘The Last Surrealist’ by Harvey Molloy
Harvey Molloy is a writer who lives in Wellington. His poems have appeared in various journals and magazines, including the New Zealand Listener, Landfall, Poetry New Zealand, JAAM, Snorkel and Takahe. His first collection of poems, Moonshot, was published by Steele Roberts in 2008. He is now working on his second book of poems.
Molloy comments: ‘The poem is about a Lady Gaga-like figure. I kept seeing Lady Gaga’s blank veiled face on the back of Wellington buses. She was on the cover of Mindfood magazine. I was intrigued so I started to read about Gaga and found out about her remarkable Japanese tattoo of a line from Rilke. I kept returning to the Welsh myth of Blodeuwedd: what if Blodeuwedd made herself not out of flowers but out of images? What kind of self-made avatar would that be?’
Harvey Molloy's website