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Christopher Arigo received his MFA in Poetry from Colorado State University (2000) and his PhD in English from University of Nevada, Las Vegas (2008). He taught at Roland Hall Saint Mark's for years.   He was a creative consultant for Cabaret Voltage a Spoken Word and Music show that ran in Salt Lake City off and on from 2003  to 2012.


The following is titled "Four father parables, or the Father trails a nozzle & hose forgotten during a hasty refuel, or the Father’s holding tank in dire need of fresh water, or the Father vibrates at the speed of light, or the father burrows through strata & igneous layers". 

the Father ambulates out of reach in 4-wheel drive / with each horn wail / with each muffler curse spewed / He shifts from over-drive / beyond-the-clutch to pater-speed / His sons keep their voices down / heads down / crash helmets cinched tight & goggles in place / His sophic epigrams / 8 cylinders piston & purr / downshifted for hills / the sons smell burning oil & brakes / steel radials fray / the Father holds steady with his hydraulic neck / their sonship to the moon & back / hoping the chassis holds / His exhaustion apparent in blown gaskets / tucked under His arms / they soar 4-doored above grid-locked traffic / the Father grins from the grill / sunlight glints from chrome below / clutch engaged for the final push against the upper atmosphere & vapor lock

or

the Father retires to a sea-side aquarium / mouth-miming conversations around His snorkel’s crook / plate-glass murky with His refusal to speak anymore / He’s tired & water-logged / wears an algae beard / His sons / young enough to laugh & old enough to feel pity / hide fishing tackle from visitors / bubbles rise from the Father’s mouth / the sons watch for sign or sound / knowing they could never live like this / once He was pelagic / caroused in kelp beds & coral reefs / successfully dodged nets & lures / an ocean fraught with peril / His war stories untold now / He never wonders what happened as He reads a sodden newspaper / butts His head without restlessness / His skin slowly greens / His sons call him Merman / & in moments of levity Gill / He finds none of it funny / in fact He finds it nothing at all

or

the Father becomes a phone line / His soul fiber-optic / eyes lit like a super-conductor / which is good / He’d never had a soul before / neither did His kids / now His arms open 3-thousand miles to make room for all 3 sons / actors in a live-feed virtual sitcom / He speaks to them in pulses / 3-billion amps/day / knows of the birth & death of stars / never forgets their birthdays / patches into satellite feeds linked to supercomputers / Über-Pater / King of 3 Million Watts / His fiefdom hums with transformers & cruciform supports / at light speed His mouth arrives faster than His words / at light speed 1 Father suffices / His arms already stretch so far they thin to nothing

or

farther & farther he retreats into the abandoned mine called home / a canary for companionship / light flickering from his helmet / his complexion pales / his sons shout / answered by wet echoes / occasional muffled dynamite blasts / he thinks he hears voices inquiring about his candle supply / dismisses them as tricks / trickles from the ceiling / coal fires blacken his body / a cut-out of darkness / to him every sky is the night sky / all news is the nightly news / the TV’s picture resolved into one monotonous shade / to pass time he feeds his bats etiolated crickets / legs still twitching / & of course he digs / pick-axe worn into a hammer / headlamp dimming / at this rate he’ll soon burn up in the earth’s core / already salt crusts his brow / his sons long ago retreated to their well-lit homes / when he reaches bottom / he’ll charter a boat / but is concerned about the one-way ticket / that he needs some one to place coins over his eyes

 





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