Greenland Frost Camel

James Grinwis

It comes. It is the worst thing

you ever imagined because it has

no conscience. It runs around

with the green sliding off its back

and every one votes for him

because he is a camel. If I’m talking

about a camel it means

I’m not thinking about anything.

Just sitting around, drinking

my tea and asparagus, chewing the verbs that

my right hand places in front of my ear.

There are no citizens living inside it.

I hope this is true because my ear

is like a banana with no nutrition. It appears

to be screwed on correctly as is a banana

but it is a blot of tar and lemon rinds.

The vacuity that slides down is a toy lemon

with an engine run by the Greenland frost camel.

That green bastard. Kill me.


Like diamonds, like working with them

in the vagaries of going left then right,

then into the tube-swept landscape

and upturning some turnips

who weren’t asking to be turned

because it’s no fun. No fun is the stratagem

of my favorite house. My house is my favorite

because it has a dog and a monkey.

The monkey is me. The dog has a name

that rhymes with smoke. Smoke with an “ie”

sound at the end of it. Thank you for deferring

but it’s too late damn you you bigger more successful



The afternoon light gets late

and I’m still squinting into a paper

that makes less sense than the neologism

nobody knows. I’m the neologism

that nobody knows, because it’s part of the dreams

of shrouded women and their orgasms.

My house is not an orgasm.

Too bad for the house. And the orgasm.


There is a red carpet.

There is a red carpet the dog sleeps upon

and then leaves, which is not too cool

for the people who live in the carpet.

They wear strange hats

and their exoskeletons glisten.

That is why they nibble on dogs

and ankles with bracelets. I enjoy wrapping my mouth

around her ankle that has a bracelet around it.

This isn’t cool for the people who live in the carpet

either. But I am strong. I am in love

with a woman with an ankle and bracelet and

at the same time I eat and think

how the Greenland frost camel has destroyed my dream

of ever sleeping in a bed made of poems and torque.

Then there’d be no more drinking. Then

a sense would come of how arbitrary

are the undulations of the world. And like

the people in the carpet, it would be realized

that there is nothing between me and the bracelet

and that torque is a tensile term and there’s no way

a bed could be made from it.


I’m drinking and screwing paper to the wall,

it’s like I’m a sieve for things, all the things

that make a difference shooting right past me.

In this world I look at what I’m supposed to look at

without looking. There are many shades of green.

Everyone has a favorite green. It is everyone’s

secret and favorite color. Like an olive

that everyone loves. I once was an olive,

A Spanish olive, but my wife wasn’t Spanish she was Norwegian.

She didn’t like olives, she liked the russet capes

of radishes. She would gnaw the capes off them

so the ivory pulp of the radish lay naked and doomed.

Though I was an olive I wore a russet cape.

They mistook me for a radish that had rotted.

They did not take my cape from me. They left me alone.

What a pathetic radish, they said. My wife left me.


The Greenland frost camel walks around

with no conscience. Its hooves stomp upon the leftover

muck. And the snow, which twitches

like poisoned caterpillars which are dead

but still twitch because of some anti-matter

left in the throne room with twenty two batteries

stuck inside the throne.


If you ask me to fall I will kill you.

Just ask me. Go ahead.

Make me think there’s a point to all this

and I will show you the underside of the law.

It is thick and gutted and its tail is forked.

It is the tail of a camel

devoured by a tax form. It’s a form

without a form. It’s a sink that looks like a tub

where dead, mutilated guitarists awaken

to wash themselves.


The alligator was an alligator.

He made a lion out of paper

and ate it. He felt a lot better

because he was starting to develop a complex

and realized it.

There is too much violence.

There are no ways to handle anything for real.

I hate violence. I want to kill it.

I want to take it between my thumb

and grind it like one would grind

a bug that has almost died, or some chalk,

or a bad, vengeful driver.

Maybe I’m the devil.


The idea of strength got mated

to a possum-fish. I broke them up.

There has to be violence to fight violence I said.

You have to be strong to fight violence I said.

You have to kill it I said. Because of this

there will always be violence.


The scrap vehicles are filled with ogres.

Look at how they sweep whatever’s in their path.


Sweep, Sweep, they call, believing they are cute.