Friday, June 24, 2011


Apes Aping Man

They shuttled in the apes from Africa to have a look at it. The dying tree dropped its leaves during the middle of summer. One of the apes grabbed an axe and swung at the trunk. The scientists dared not stop the ape for fear of hypothesis untested. The theologians opened their Bibles to different passages to find comfort. The other apes began to scream as the axe chipped the bark away and exposed the bare flesh of wood.

And I wanted black clouds to cover the sky. It had to be the religion in me.

The apes sawed at the fallen tree. The middle had been hollowed out by Chinese beetles. The theologians conversed about Noah. The scientists discussed the possibility of a new lightweight raft. The apes planed the wood and soon two long rounded pieces and other smaller pieces lay on the ground

And I wanted some new mathematical contraption to appear. It had to be the scientist in me.

The apes bored out holes in the large round planks of wood. They rasped small holes on the edges of the small round boards. They placed the small boards in the holes of the large planks and it became obvious they were building a ladder. When they finished the ladder, they moved it to an empty plot of ground and dug a small hole, put the ladder in it and refilled the hole with the dirt. The ladder led to nowhere. The apes left the area single file and boarded the plane that would take them back to the forests of Africa.

And I wanted the ladder to extend to the bottom of a large hole. It had to be the human in me.

The scientist and theologians agreed to place a fence around the ladder that led to nowhere. They studied it together, but never reached a solid conclusion. One day a cardinal alighted on the top of the ladder and pooped then flew away. The scientist and theologians couldn’t agree on what the cardinal and the poop meant. The scientist wanted to examine the poop with a microscope. The theologians wanted to see what would sprout from the spot.

And I wanted to tell them it meant nothing. It had to be the joker in me.  

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