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Part 1

i

Nathaniel, acrobat,
Zen student, poet,
spiritual warrior,
perhaps. Some say
angel. Let us see.

ii

January.
Hunting Nathaniel.
In the snow I find foot-prints.
His?

iii

There. He inhales,
bends, raises
a hidden weight,
breathing out,
lowers it. In
a nearby barrel's
liquid depths,
the moon.

iv

My cell phone chimes.
Jean. Where am I?
I lie. Watch him
raising the moon.

v

Back late, he
takes a shower,
does Mantis press-
ups, fixes a snack,
meditates. These
in no special order.

Part 2

i

In their concrete tower
Shell's directors inspect
a map, wish to turn his
back yard into a mall,
gym in the basement
for city drones. Now,
Nathaniel, atop a wall,
180 Cats to a ledge,
his muscles, packed.

ii

Taken from Nathaniel's journal ...

Fundamentals:

1)
2)
3)

iii

A glow in the city,
Nathaniel, in white
trainers, enters
a throbbing club.

I heard
he never sleeps
with the same girl
twice.

iv

Cue chalked,
he rolls up
a chequered sleeve,
takes a long pot.

Hush.

On his arm,
new scars.

Part 3

i

Down Cat Alley,
easy-limbed, alone,
he runs.

May morning,
London, his.

Boats tied up
on the Thames'
bank creak –
a rusty lullaby.

He passes
a Starbuck's.

Nothing on
his mind
but running.

Reaching
a flight of steps

he leaps.

ii

Who is Nathaniel?
Who does he see
when he jerks off,
fold his arm round
before sleep?

iii

Top deck, sweet-
flowered cannabis,
misted windows,
no stars tonight.

Part 4

i

Three perch
on a branch.
More below,
sun-bathing,
sharing cider,
weed. An I-
Pod wired to
speakers hums.
To the youngest,
the one who
wants to join in,
isn't sure how,
he speaks.

ii

It's said the closer you come
to God, the more it hurts.

He tramps the summer street,
in a sleeveless vest. Big cat,

small town. He brushes past
strangers, whistling. How much

does he hurt? Now, slipping
by him, we make eye contact,

I think. His sunglasses flash.
He's gone. He's smoke.

iii

'Try this,' he says –
a one-handed hand-stand.
The world upside down.
A rush of blood to the head.
Nathaniel, you bastard!
How did you get so free?

iv

A park sit-up bench,  
gazing at azure sky.
He curls a hand round
the bench's cool iron
bar and busts clouds.

Part 5

i

Urban myth, I want you
dead. Your perfection is

my crucifix. Nathaniel,
you've stolen too much 

airtime. How can I exist 
where you are?

ii

Both lanes blocked
on the escalator.
By the handrails,
barriers. Nathaniel,
confined, losing
his cool. Think
we'll let you by?

iii

At the gig, 
Nathaniel, 
downing JDs. 
Girls want him, 
but he didn't 
get where he is 
by taking easy 
bets. Besides, 
someone told me 
he wasn't that 
way inclined. 

iv

Cocaine, cut
in the bathroom,
loosens tongues.
Down a well,
he's speechless.

Part 6

i

Delicate as rice paper,
easily torn,
he comes unfixed
from a hoped-for love.

Such things happen.

Part 7

i

Rooftop. Gunshot.
Doves spray upwards.

This close to death.

Nathaniel, swarming
down a drainpipe.

11.23pm.

He's swearing,
spitting teeth.

Did he recognise
me?

ii

He has been to Rome,
questioned
the philosophy students
in their black
trench coats,
talked with the African
street-hawkers
who greet passers-by
with ivory smiles –
'Ciao, bello!'

By the Fall,
he's in LA.

iii

Enough of Nathaniel.
Who am I?

A butterfly catcher.

iv

Bearded, in the ocean,
I watch you play with a child,
carry him up a blonde dune,
spade sand with him, buy
ice creams. Is it true
you have a son?

Part 8

Epilogue

Sun through the blanket,
muted on the white walls
& Marshall amp. Street-
heat, bike, sometimes I fall.
By pale blue sea I remove
my shoes, touch the water.
Look. A skater-girl swerves,
flags snap, seagulls stagger
the breeze. Easy to lose
balance, such free air.
thought i might as well resubmit this. apologies to those who've already read it.
Add a Comment:
 

Daily Deviation

Given 2006-01-25
In Nathaniel by *venturus we go on a hunt for the unnatural in a world that is inescapably familiar. What does this synthesis of realities mean? Who is Nathaniel? Does it matter? ( Suggested by StormyPetrol and Featured by imperfect )
:iconamweitz:
AMWeitz Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2010  Student Writer
I have no idea what to say to this.
So I'm gonna go with "holy shitballs."
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2010   Writer
thanks for reading and commenting AM. :)
Reply
:iconamweitz:
AMWeitz Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010  Student Writer
Ahaha. My pleasure. And my goodness, what a pleasure. :heart:
Reply
:iconschriftsteller:
schriftsteller Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2009   Writer
This is completely inspiring, beautiful, enigmatic, stunning...I could go on!
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2009   Writer
hello schrift, thanks for the comment and the fave. :-)
Reply
:iconschriftsteller:
schriftsteller Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2009   Writer
You're welcome. :)
Reply
:iconash-x-lee:
ash-X-lee Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2008
"Does it matter?" It's a good question.

:tea:
Reply
:iconestallidos:
estallidos Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2008   Writer
i think i met nathaniel, once.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2008   Writer
hello estallidos, thanks for reading and commenting. :)
Reply
:iconordie:
ordie Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2008
I loved this in Mimesis and I loved it here.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2008   Writer
hello ordie, thanks very much for the comments and faves. much appreciated. :)
Reply
:iconwordworks:
wordworks Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2007
I was directed to your gallery and I'm so thankful for it.

What a fun chase this poem is, all the slow shifts and sudden swerves. I'd follow Nathaniel, too. :+fav:
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2007   Writer
hello wordworks, thanks for the comment and the fave. :)
Reply
:iconmyloveliestsequence:
myloveliestsequence Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2007
this read as if paul auster had kidnapped icelandic writer sjon, and after having had some decent dose of william carlos williams decided that it was time to go into the mushrooms and watch 'sin city' together. maybe i am wrong. in any case i wanted to at least tell you something about my liking for this poem.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jul 6, 2007   Writer
hello myloveliestsequence, thanks for the comment and the fave. :)
Reply
:iconmyseity:
mySeity Featured By Owner May 6, 2007
I don't know what to say.
it's just an amazing thing when someone else takes a dormant feeling underneath your skin and organs and explodes it into writing.
+fav
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner May 7, 2007   Writer
hello mySeity, thanks very much for your comments and the fave on Nathaniel, much appreciated and nice to meet you. :)
Reply
:iconstarsdie:
starsdie Featured By Owner Apr 20, 2007
Love it.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Apr 20, 2007   Writer
hello starsdie, thanks for the fave. :)
Reply
:iconpoeticwar:
PoeticWar Featured By Owner Apr 3, 2007   Writer
(Have you had this published yet?)
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2007   Writer
hello PoeticWar, no i haven't done anything with Nathaniel as it's too long to submit to Magma or The Rialto.
Reply
:iconpoeticwar:
PoeticWar Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2007   Writer
Reckon I could take it for Mimesis 2?

I'm planning ahead, of course. Issue 1 isn't even out properly yet.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2007   Writer
sure you can have it for Mimesis.
Reply
:iconnegated:
Negated Featured By Owner Apr 3, 2007
OMG.

I read this ages ago, the day it was DDed (I try to read all of those) but for some idiotic reason I didn't bother to read your gallery. |:

So glad to have re-found it though--I've never forgotten it like most of the DDed poems I've read.

~~happily rereads~~
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2007   Writer
oh well, am glad you rediscovered it, and thanks for the fave. :)
Reply
:iconnightlynightmare:
nightlynightmare Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2007
this is mind-blowing.
amazing.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2007   Writer
hello nightly, thanks for reading and commenting, glad you liked it. :)
Reply
:iconcariadav:
cariadav Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2006
hmm - I don't often add things to my faves, really. A test I do to see if I really like a piece is to leave it - if I come back and try finding it again a few days later, then I know I like it.

I love this piece. The lines seem to not fit, and yet gel better than most things I have read (and I'm not exactly a narrow reader). Truly, this is piece of work that I would be proud to count amongst my favourites.

In particular, I love the lines:
"Urban myth, I want you
dead. I am your stalker.

Your perfection is the
cross I bear. It eats me." from Part 4 iv

I have had to show this to many people. It's just fantastic!
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2006   Writer
thanks for your generous comment, cariadav, it's very much appreciated. :)
Reply
:icontrish-dancegurl:
trish-dancegurl Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2006
this is epic. i love love it.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2006   Writer
hello trish, thanks for commenting, glad you liked it. :)
Reply
:iconmavrikakis:
Mavrikakis Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006
Beautifully intoxicatingly perplexing. Reminds me of mine [link]
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2006   Writer
hey Mav, thanks for commenting!
Reply
:iconmavrikakis:
Mavrikakis Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2006
Tis okay ;) Did you check out mine? I just rememberd something daunting, I had a good friend called nathaneil :O_o:
Reply
:iconirukandji:
irukandji Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006
purely magical... :clap: I read this twice to have it sink in... now am wondering myself, who is this Nathaniel...
A beautiful structure and endless possibilities.. I liked the outside view the whole poem... being watched and the whoel interpretation of it...
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2006   Writer
thanks for taking the time to read and comment, irukandji, i'm glad you liked it.
Reply
:iconirukandji:
irukandji Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2006
also nice to see it as a DD !
Reply
:iconawe-inspired:
awe-inspired Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006  Hobbyist Digital Artist
hmm, I find it difficult not to be critical, so I'll just say the ideas seem scattered, and this has no "whole-ness" to it that makes all the verses belong to each other.

However, if your intention was just to create a random chain of thought, then you have achieved that.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006   Writer
hello awe-inspired, thnaks for taking the time to read and comment on the poem.
Reply
:iconawe-inspired:
awe-inspired Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2006  Hobbyist Digital Artist
your welcome, wish I could have been more generous with my compliments - I don't want to sound like a grinch!
Reply
:iconintricatevision:
IntricateVision Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2006   Digital Artist
That... was awesome. I enjoyed completely. Wonderful work.
At first it was the name that caught my eye, In one of the things I am in the process of writing the main protaganist name is Nathaniel, and so I was curious. Very glad I was curious. :clap:
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006   Writer
thanks for commenting IntricateVision, glad you liked it. :D
Reply
:iconpanegyrical:
panegyrical Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2006   Photographer
intense.
breathtaking.
i felt so involved.
thankyou.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006   Writer
thank YOU for commenting, glad you enjoyed it. :)
Reply
:icontenko72:
tenko72 Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
I like how this is written. It's, like, so many thoughts.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006   Writer
thanks for reading and commenting, tenko. :)
Reply
:icontenko72:
tenko72 Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
Your welcome!
Reply
:iconsaint-leibowitz:
saint-leibowitz Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2006
I too seek beauty. I rarely find it. Congratulations.
Reply
:iconventurus:
venturus Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2006   Writer
yeah well thats's the way it goes with beauty, i guess. thanks for reading and commenting, saint-leibowitz. :)
Reply
:iconwildwinds:
Wildwinds Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2006   Photographer
Brilliant! It stops abruptly and leaves you wondering when you move to the next part, but then once you get to the second or third line you get back into it. I really like this piece, we know nothing about Nathaniel yet we know everything. The best writing I've read in a while.
Reply
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Submitted on
June 7, 2005
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Mature Content
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