Note: This story is a parody of Poe's OVERALL fiction, as I perceive it. It's not a parody of any particular story he's written. The plot in this story, and the dressing I've given it, is mine alone. But I've made the plot and dressing SIMILAR to what you find in Poe's fiction, being that of seriousness, intricacy, and craziness. The way I've parodied these aspects, however, isn't by exaggerating them, as you'd expect in a regular parody of whatever. What I've attempted is to brightly HIGHLIGHT these aspects instead, by intermingling with them a new aspect that conflicts with them -- sexual humour. This humour in itself will of course amuse you, but when the writing style and characters remain deadly serious in the presence of this humour, they too will become humorous, precisely because they don't seem to detect the sexual humour. The writing style and characters remain serious, intricate, and crazy, just like in a Poe story. Not that there's anything wrong with these qualities in fiction, of course (I love Poe to death, or should I say back to life), but seriousness, intricacy, and craziness does have its funny side, if you view it from a certain angle.

I should begin this with my nick-name, being Grapenuts. Y'see, I used to keep the reason for this name a secret, but I've recently been "exposed" by unforeseen circumstances, in the form of a somewhat fascinating fluke. So I may as well chronicle the nature of this fascinating fluke, for the secret it will reveal by implication will soon reach your eager ears via other avenues now anyway. Plus it allows me to finally express the side of myself long keen to come out, which is better than sitting here asking myself why I wasn't more damn careful to conceal my mystery. And besides, even if I had tried being more careful sometimes, one of those times wouldn't have been when I was revealed, for few imaginations could have realized that such a crazy potential for exposure lay in this situation.

In other words, even if I HAD known there was a hole in the crotch of my pants, I still wouldn't have worn any underwear that day, because how could I have guessed that, as I lay there on the bed with my legs apart, a telescopic camera could be staring STRAIGHT at my exposed testicles while the curtains were closed? For that would mean the camera had to be seeing through some other window in the house and turning all the corners necessary to end up seeing into my bedroom via its DOOR! How was I to know that, as I lay on my back with no less than seven testicles showing through a hole in my pants, my house was equipped with the correct number and position of reflecting surfaces required for a camera to achieve this zigzag through the house and into my room?

Yet as I stood staring at the photograph taken by the camera, I knew this must have all been the case, for doctors tell me I'm the only man alive with several nuts. I tell you, I could not bloody believe it. And what's worse is that the fateful photographer tells me he not only hadn't consciously aimed the long lens before looking through it and finding it on my bunch of "grapenuts", but that the reflecting surface it'd been inadvertently aimed at was the mirror in my backyard birdcage. It was in this reflection that he THEN saw a view of my lounge window, through which the second reflecting surface - a mirror above the mantle - could be seen, waiting.

And in this mirror, the reflection of yet another, which is otherwise securely out of sight from any of the other millions of possible vantage points outside the house. And this third reflecting surface wasn't even officially a mirror at all, but a pane of cabinet glass backed by the necessary darkness for mirroring to occur. In this more-or-less mirror, a view down the hallway was offered, at the end of which was my very open bedroom door. And just when you thought no camera eye could see regions of a room not visable through its door from outside the room, guess what? That's right, a chrome hubcap, so highly polished you could see testicles in it, was both visable through my door and positioned at just the right angle to reflect the otherwise hidden view between my legs.

So in summary, even though the camera lense was fixed on the birdcage mirror in my most beautiful backyard, the image reflected in its very center was my ever-so-unsuspecting testicles seven, due to a mirrors within mirrors maddness. It was almost as if the birdcage mirror was a porthole in the fabric of reality, offering a line of sight that led straight to my shaven sex, even though physical reality had them hidden at the heart of the maze that is my house. Yet more fascinating still was that every household item partially in the path created by these mirrors - leaves of pot plant, corner of piano, tip of ironing board etc. - intruded into the very edge of the path in such a way as to not only effectively narrow it into the likes of a tube, but one which framed my testicles so tightly when looked through that, had the camera been a millimeter to one side, or I been lying a centimeter to one side, my testicles would have become partially obstructed.

So you may be able to picture the photographer's stupefied, strained, and stark expression upon handing me the photo of my birdcage mirror three days ago, but not until I tell you the one last element here will you picture properly what was, in fact, his haggard, his helpless, his ... HANGED expression. It was only when this last improbability was presented to me that my own face contorted into anguish to match. When he was sure I'd understood fully the freak of fate that had fallen at our feet, he then loosened the strings on his shorts and, whipping both them and his boxers down in one whoosh, revealed to my unbelieving eyes a set of seven.



I live in New Zealand, and might, but might not, die there. I might die in the highlands of Ethiopia, after all, with the Galada monkeys. One never knows where ones path might lead.

POE FEST ° November 2003