Dec 15, 2009

James Bond Suite

Written by Amit Majmudar

Read by Amy Watkins

1. The Astronomy of Bondgirls

I want to name stars the way Ian Fleming named women.

Every falling star a Domino Vitali,
The star of Bethlehem rechristened Vesper Lynd,
The pole star reliably Moneypenny.

Bodies celestial deserve such invention,
And not just the stars, the blonde comets too.
Name one for Honey Rider coming
Again and again, almost the same gold
As Botticelli’s Ursula Undress
Holding her own seashell on Crab Kythera.

Imagine our own lonely Sol
Stripped bare
Letting us in on her full name,


And the implacable black hole
At our galaxy’s core
Pussy Galore.

2. The Short and Happy Life of Plenty O’Toole

This one died in golden paint,
Fleshious metal, trophy blonde.
This one splashed among piranhas.
This one, while she danced with Bond,

Swung in his arms as a pistol rose,
Took the bullet, and took a dip.
This one licked some poison dripped
Down a thread onto her lip.

This one suffered death by hammock,
Strangled in its rope cocoon.
This one drowned herself in Venice,
The only one who died too soon.

How much better so to perish,
Well before the next year’s film;
Not to move into his flat,
Wipe his sink, or cook for him;

Mix the drink, then see him irked you
Served him his martini stirred.
Even worse, for all the jam he
Wipes on his pyjama shirt,

Old man’s diet, tea and toast
(How old is he? Ninety-four?),
He can go to sleep in sagging
Age and wake as Roger Moore,

Only in his dossier
Rotting like a Dorian Gray.
Leave the balcony unlocked
And he’ll slip out for days and days,

Where he’s gone top secret, always,
Never one Wish You Were Here.
He recalls them by their perfumes,
Names them, like champagnes, by year.

3. Hymn to Sean Connery

Connery, how did I end up
A double o thirty-year-old
Father of two?

So must all international adolescents of mystery
Grow into men domestically mastered —

For the hand that starts out as a Walther PPK,
Knuckles by the cheek, index finger in the air,
Ages into a handshake
And signs, signs, signs away,

And time, that strolls past the daydreaming
Camera shutter
Has been known to turn without warning
And with the gun hidden at its side
Shoot daydreamers dead,

The circle swaying to and fro
Before it tumbles to the lower right hand corner,
Goes white, and dilates
Into the first scene
Of the rest of a life.

Connery, before the baccarat, you too
Held earthly burdens, earthly offices —
Bricklayer, coffin polisher, milkman;

Connery, eternal bachelor, may I too
Someday unzip this mortal scuba suit
And reveal the tuxedo beneath.