archy and mehitabel

I have a book, Archy and Mehitabel, by Don Marquis, that is a bit of cultural literacy. In Marquis’s columns for the New York Sun, “archy” was a cockroach imbued with the soul of a free verse poet who typed out messages to Marquis by a laborious process of climbing to the top of Marquis’s typewriter and diving down onto the next letter key. Many of archy’s notes to Marquis bemoan the fact that his writing lacks capital letters. You don’t have to buy the book to get a taste of archy’s view of the world, though; just head over to this page and look in the “Don Marquis corner” for six “archy” etexts (the first link is not an “archy” tale).

One of them may even have something relevant to the idea of “doomsday” that has been discussed here lately:

well well boss there is
something to be said
for the lyric and imperial
attitude
believe that everything is for
you until you discover
that you are for it
sing your faith in what you
get to eat right up to the
minute you are eaten
for you are going
to be eaten

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Wesley R. Elsberry

Falconer. Interdisciplinary researcher: biology and computer science. Photographer. Husband. Christian. Activist.

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