"News item (from a great height, April 21, 2010)" - M Bromberg


"The ingrate Mark Twain, enjoying the incredible technology
that God allowed Tesla, an anti-social narcissist, to create."
 (photo and caption courtesy Vain Twain)


"News item (from a great height, April 21, 2010)"
M Bromberg 

After he was described in the Atlantic Monthly as "Mark Twain, originally of Missouri, but then of Hartford, and now ultimately of the solar system, not to say the universe ... " he took pleasure in thinking of his name floating somewhere among distant planets.
 
 
 
Your correspondent here reports
that Sam Clemens has laid aside his pen.
Having once arrived on Mr. Halley's comet,
the author has it by the tail again.
 
His surprise at this astounding feat
can not be overstated in the least;
he was quite prepared to make the journey --
but not so much deceased.
 
Mr. Clemens tells us he is
luckily unafraid of heights,
and daily enjoys St. Peter's good cigars;
until some wires can be arranged,
he sends regrets that telegrams
will be less frequent from these stars.
 
The author is off
in search of a dark saloon.
Until then, I remain
your reporter and most far-flung correspondent,
Twain.

Clemens was a writer as concerned with crafting his legacy as any novel he ever wrote, and his instructions to publish the full Autobiography one hundred years after his death indicates he certainly meant to have the very last laugh on the Gilded Age. Here is a poem featured last spring on WSKG-FM's Off the Page program website that imagines the author traveling the vast reaches of the Universe -- and sending back a telegram about conditions there.

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