Conspiracy 1999

When I saw the first corn circle
It was as though a Jovian thunderbolt
Had burned equally complex
Pathways through my brain.
Everything clicked: All those problems that bugged me:
The alien abductions, Roswell,
The second Kennedy assassination,
Why my father had beaten
The living shit out of my mother.

This was all the key I needed
To communicate with the others.
That Friday the 13th, my friend the Shaman
And I set up camp in the middle
Ready to wait out the Millennium.

Knuckle-bones helped us determine
The location of the wormhole,
And an agaric-aggravated trance
Gave us effective incantations
While we stared into the sun.

On the third day of our fast,
He came, lo!, on clouds descending;
Black, hairless and rather camp.
Taking my right hand in his wounded hands,
'Feel' he said, 'the hole in my side.'

—George Manuell

George Manuell is a retired Modern Languages teacher living in Tamworth, near Birmingham, UK. He has had poems published in Orbis magazine, Poetry Nottingham, etc. Five years teaching in Mwanza, Tanzania, in the '60s resulted in an unpublished novel. His main hobby is Early Music (viols, recorders, lute). Family: wife, three sons, four grandchildren.