Artist Books > Whaling Town: The Red Ball & Caverns Tale (2017)

Written, designed, illustrated, letterpress printed, and bound by Alexis Beucler. Printed with polymer plates on a Vandercook 219 in Tallahassee, FL in the spring of 2017. Somerset white 175 gsm paper.

Edition of 15.

2017
2017
2017
2017
2017

Whaling Town: the Red Ball & Cavern’s Tale

The Red Ball

Red ball,
Momma gave me one.
Bounce!
Bounce!
Pop!

Poppa told me not to chase.
Look left, look right, look left again--
Aha! I found you!

I like to imagine it fell from the sky--
Bright star beaming red.
Thick rubber, delicious maraschino cherry!
Mmm ah!
Ahhh--
Ouch!

It burned a deep hole into the skin--
Earthy skin-- fleshy skin--
All of the world blinked and
Poof! It was gone!

In the womb they multiplied and grew.
I like to sit on mine and
Think about Clotho, Lachesis, Atropos.

Oh sisters, how they hold you tight in their hands--
Warm feeling--
Nice feeling--
My toes tickle.

But then down below a hairy figure found our hole--
He gleamed and gathered sparkling treasures.

We skip towards the figure.
Smooth hands distract--
Hair unravels--
The shiny treasures fall.
And oh!
Ooooh!
Oh what fun!

Dinnng!
Look left, look right, look left again.
Momma called and I carried you in.
Time to eat.



The Caverns

Bright star beaming red
Tore a hole from the sky into the land
The sisters looked and gathered but I went in--

Momma oh momma don’t be mad!

Oh!
Ooh!
Ooooh!

The womb, dark and full
Every step singing a note--

Drip!
Drip!
Drop!

Small and tight built for me
The world opens.

A star from above flutters--
Crack in the ceiling--
Little cherubs on strings dance in the night sky.

Below a pool of water-- unmoving--
Lets me watch the ballet above.
But then!

Water pours from the skin
and the pool sings its own ballad.
And oh!
Imagine--
Fish everywhere! Blind but moving!


Hairy men, round glowing nymphs,
We dance!

Ooof!
A tug on my waist.
I’ve gone too far.

I turn to leave and shadow creatures gather.
I better go before night falls.



The Whaling Town

Poppa came home ‘n slapped a big ol’ fish on the table.
Momma came over round a-glowin’
-That’s nice.
Poppa looked ‘n stared--
Round, warm--
How long had be been gone?

I gave him a hug-- poppa oh poppa!
His eyes on momma--
--Goin’ to catch ‘nother.
[Grabbed a bottle]
And left.

Ohhh! The women here--
All big ‘n round ‘n glowin’

Near the house I swing and jump from a tree
Woosh! Splassssh!
Water ‘round me holdin’ me tight--
Imagine--

Oh bare ‘n round ‘n gleaming nymphs--
Mountain women--
Natural women--
They share their juice with the ocean.
Oh!
Ooh!
Ooooh!

They jump!

Down below the men, covered in hair, busy in harvest--
Notice ‘em
‘n capture ‘em
‘n bring ‘em to shore.
Big ‘n round.
Splasssh!
Out came ‘nother!

But sometimes they get away--
Bottle ‘n hand--
They find ‘em dancin’
Big ‘n round ‘n gleamin’

I was swingin’ and splanshin’ and waitin’--
[Waitin’ for poppa to come home]
And over there I see ‘em catch the nymphs.
They thought they’d have some fun.

Hold ‘em down-- nice ‘n tight
Bottles break--
Water breaks--
Oooof! Out came ‘nother!
But they held her tight.
Slapped her with male might.

Ouch!

[Nothin’ like tippin’ the old cow over,
Breaking the empty bottle over her head,
and shovin’ it in her hoo-ha]

I’m not sure why-- red water a-flowin’
Broken glass a-glimmerin’

They left ‘n she’s lyin’
I run on over-- put the fish in the water and bring ‘er home.

Dinnng!
The bell rang!
Momma oh momma!
Fish on the table, poppa’s home!