AE Reiff – prose



                  Seeing the Angel Poet


          Laban’s angel is the next best laugh until we get to Balaam.  Our Father Maimonides saw the spirit and seraphim in the most wicked of men.  Laban, the most perfectly wicked man, violated all the righteous, but Balaam tops him. Guide of the Perplexed says an ass had to see the spirit first. Laban. Balaam. Ass. Who’s next?

          Ding an sich, my friends, explains the molecules and name. Nothing is really there when the ass goes to consult its betters. This is an ass of the upper crust, no mere donkey. Maimonides calls it Seer. On this prophet Balaam sat; it was his eyeglass to see the angel. You think it a joke, man-straddle? This our fathers do not say.

          Here the indignity is a whirling sword in the path. Balaam chose the better part and beat the ass with a stick. He beat the stick, he beat the ass, he beat himself. Things come in threes. Swords flashed. The ass turned into a wall. I don’t mean it became a wall but in turning to avoid the angel it ran into a wall. Balaam kicked it with his foot.

          The ass saw the sword a third time when Balaam had yet to see it once. The ass went down on a knee. That’s history.  Balaam beat it with a book. On long roads there’s a lot to read. But while the perfect ass was dumb, it was not blind, and conversely Balaam could talk. He filled the air with oaths. He was a poet. His blind eye flew open when the ass began to plead, which sounded just like Buñuel pounding out the song he knew so well, “I thank God I am an atheist, ho, ho, ho.” This of course became, “I am, thank God, an atheist nevermore.” Obsessed with the Bible, overcome by sight, he saw every word unspeakable carved on the naked eye.  Buñuel, Laban, Balaam, Ass, fill in your name.

          To interpret, Balaam’s sin is the military industry, which is why the angel said, I come here to oppose. Strike up the band. This proverb of the paranormal Balaam, who cursed God and got blessed, is the perfect motto for poets who, as angels, will have their way. Men do get an ass to speaking, but when will it stop? As to the task of ass thought, its circumstance and braying, we do not doubt it is an ass poem playing. That’s nothing new under sun. Along side we hear Balaam’s trombone.


Laban most wicked of men.-Maimonides, Guide of the Perplexed, II, 195f

No atheist any more. -Buñuel and Dali in Un Chien Andalou (1929) cut the eye with a razor. Dali accused Buñuel of being an atheist and a communist over the unconsciousness carcass on the piano in that film. Buñuel could have been murdered like Lorca had he stayed in Spain, but he deconfessed his atheism, “it’s guilt we must escape from, not God.” El ángel exterminador (1962) Exterminating Angel (1962), is a symbolic  holocaust.

-I come here to oppose. Numbers 22.32.

Balaam. Numbers 22-24.

AE Reiff. The thoughts and impressions of all kinds of receivers broadcast back. Whether imperfect in themselves or they are imperfect is one, which sees objectively here too obscure, there too facile, here opaque, there commonplace. Meet these imperfections here.


About gobbet

gobbet is a literary magazine dedicated to publishing the very best experimental poetry and prose. Intellectual perversity and explorations of dark themes are positively encouraged. We are only interested in work that is progressively experimental. We want to see risks, and we want to see them pay. No previously published work. Prose should not be longer than 1000 words. There are always exceptions. Send 3-5 poems. Include a short bio. Send submissions to Work will be published every 5-10 days. We also intend to publish anthologies of selected work published in gobbet. We will do our best to reply promptly. Most submissions will receive a decision within a month.
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1 Response to AE Reiff – prose

  1. Pingback: Yeats | AEReiff

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