hello there

Stolen Mummies
The Poet's Experience in London

introduction by Brendan Constantine

..........A few days ago (Daylight Savings Time), a thirty five year old man residing in Hollywood California, a mythological city boasting more gods than voters, was a victim of a psychotic episode already referred to by the local deities as “The Recent Episode”. For a space of about seventy two hours, or until the effects of a collection of poems entitled  Stolen Mummies, by Rick Lupert, had worn off, the man believed himself to be the adventurous author of the same volume. His behavior during this period, while pleasant enough toward the landlord and other tenants of the building in which he lives, was marked by spells of random furniture moving and assertions (to no one in particular) that his apartment had been invaded by “Englishmen”. Fortunately, his pet cat (Maggie), who had seen him through a previous seizure in which he insisted he was the late S.J. Perelman, was equipped to deal with these peculiarities. She amended his daily diet to include indigenous rodents and flying insects, added her name to the lease (albeit misspelled), and purchased several Thousand-Piece Jigsaw Puzzles (depicting a variety of domestic Norwegian scenes) to occupy him while his former identity reassembled.  

..........Since then, the man has steadily returned to his former self and has even taken on several writing projects, including the introduction to the aforementioned Stolen Mummies. The following is an excerpt from that effort: “Rick Lupert is an honest poet. He has an honest face. His mouth is honest. His words are honest. The sentences he makes with those words  (either spoken or written) are honest. Even the complete fabrications that emerge from the pages of his latest book positively sizzle with integrity. When, for instance, he describes his recent trip to England and the fascinating encounters he has with the people of that proud country, you can almost believe that he went there. My Irish mother used to say (the others hardly spoke to me unless I pretended to be my sister) ‘There is nothing crazy about thinking there are Englishmen hiding behind the sofa. The craziness is in looking for them’. Well folks, so keen are the subtleties of Mr. Lupert’s poetry, the reader may wonder if closing the cover of this slender book is enough to keep the British Commonwealth described therein from running amuck in your home.”

..........As one who may not have had the privilege of meeting the man who penned these lines before his “Recent Episode”, you the reader may none the less surmise that his mind is on the mend and that his lucidity with the written word, for the most part, proves it. Now, do you think you could grab the other end of this couch and help me move it away from the wall? I just want to see how many people I have to shop for.

......................................................................Brendan Constantine
......................................................................June 12, 2002

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