Literary Fiction weird fiction prose poetry poetry cryptofiction recipe

DNA Tetragrammaton

By Michael McCormick
Nov 19, 2019 · 112 words · 1 minute

Photo by Hal Gatewood via Unsplash.

From the author: A cryptic piece I published almost twenty years ago that still has readers stumped (including me!) but it's weirdly compelling. Is it a poem? A story? A koan? A sinister recipe for disaster??


1. ADENINE

Nothing good on TV.

Dog growling at something on the patio.

Her fingers bleeding from all the

goddam Publishers Sweepstakes stamps, she weeps.

 

2. GUANINE

An improbable revolt

of harlots, historians, poets, and paleontologists.

They pass coded notes on park benches.

At night debate dogma in noisy cantinas.

 

3. THYMINE

One of us is a traitor.

The phones are tapped, our rooms are bugged.

A pale, nervous bureaucrat somewhere

doodles on your transcript, spills coffee on your life.

 

4. CYTOSINE

After supper, in a garden of pomegranate moonbeams,

the traitor sees his plans deflate.

Leaking reason like old balloons.

He turns the TV on to watch cartoons.

This story originally appeared in North Coast Review.


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Michael McCormick

Mike McCormick writes literary and science fiction in his Batman pajamas