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PARADISE ALMOST LOST by Joseph Simon Newman

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posted on Aug, 19 2004 @ 10:21 PM

I'll tell about those ancient days
ere history penetrates the haze,
ere human eyes were there to gaze,
when earth was all primeval:
worms and germs and rocks and sod
were ready at the slightest nod
of quite an inexperienced God
to go into upheaval.

Not even Adam had appeared.
sin was nothing to be feared:
this was before all men were queered
by apple-eating ladies.
In fact, in those days, don't forget,
the Lord had made no devils yet,
and up 'til then had never met
a fit recruit for Hades.

There was no mammoth, fish, or seal,
Fatimas, Pepsodent, or veal,
no radio or movie reel,
no Buick, bean, or Bendix,
no pterodactyl, fudge, or Lux,
no Sal Hepatica or ducks,
no Nazis, Communists, or Klux,
no Man...and no appendix.

Well, in that very distant day,
in June, July, or August, say,
two living specks of matter lay
in Egypt or Samoa.
Two earless, eyeless, chinless specks,
with neither craniums nor necks,
nor any sign of soul or sex --
in short, two protozoa.

Now organisms of this kind
are rather flimsily designed,
with neither skin nor bones to bind
the parts to one another,
so when the larger of these two
went rolling into pastures new,
she knocked her plasm all askew --
enveloping her brother.

Well never mollusk, worm, nor slug,
nor animalculus, nor bug
had hitherto enjoyed a hug.
God wasn't sentimental!
He planned no species to reveal
the slightest hint of sex appeal!
And yet this...hug...appeared too real
to call it accidental.

Approaching closer to observe
God thought he saw a certain verve,
a quickening of plasmic nerve
unquestionably striking;
the sky, the sun, the sea, the land
were things the Lord could understand,
but here was something quite unplanned,
and scarcely to his liking.

Judicially he held his ire,
deciding he would first inquire
what set those little cells afire
in ways uncontemplated.
But neither had a mouth nor beak,
and therefore neither one could speak,
all language was the same as Greek --
thus Greek originated.

Alas! I forgot to state:
God early had invented Fate!
It now was definitely late
to check the spreading virus.
Though both were silent, well, he knew
his worst suspicions had come true:
it was evident that two
were mutually desirous.

To be explicit and exact,
from that day on the cards were stacked:
the germ of love became a fact
embedded in their plasm.
With lightning flash and thunder roll
an angry God demanded toll,
and so he dug a hellish hole
and thrust them in the chasm.

The spawn of life spread far and wide,
the species grew and multipled,
for hundreds lived, though thousands died,
God wept within his portals,
came alligators, birds, and dogs,
and elephants, and flies, and frogs,
and beetles, barnacles, and hogs,
and anthropoids, and mortals.

And ever since that fateful day
when protozoa found a way
to multiply our earthly clay,
they've handed us erebus:
for though we have discarded gills
for Carter's Little Liver Pills,
we're far more surfeited with ills
than when we were amoebas.

Just think of what we might have been
without surrealists and gin,
and broccoli, and other sin
that hurt beyond all measure.
But still, I take a certain pride
in that ancestral groom and bride,
who in some ways, I'm satisfied,
made hell on earth a pleasure.

For your reading pleasure. I've enjoyed this verse for many years on a record player recited by a guy named Biff Rose. This is the first time I have found a printed version and I thought I would share it with the folks of BTS/ATS.

posted on Aug, 21 2004 @ 09:53 AM
How is it delivered orally? I imagine an almost finger popping accusational beatnik cadence. It should be a song IMO.


posted on Aug, 21 2004 @ 10:30 AM

Originally posted by RANT
How is it delivered orally? I imagine an almost finger popping accusational beatnik cadence. It should be a song IMO.

It was recorded in the late 60's hippy era and Biff delivered it in sort of a mock amused style. He is a singer song writer and this is the only poem Ive heard from him without being piano accompanied and lyric not his own. I love Biff's stuff though he can't sing worth damn. If you have the chance, pick up "Biff Rose the thorn in Mrs. Rose's side" at a used record shop. It is unlikely it will ever be converted to CD.


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