Tarantula: The Tale Of Dale And Debbie and The Golden Gate

18: The Tale Of Dale And Debbie

By Larry Fyffe

Postmodern writing often plays around with subconscious associations, with mind- twisting allusions that lure the reader or listener into the entangled web of the text in search of meaning within the sound effects created by the arrangement of words.

“Tarantula” by Bob Dylan, a masterpiece thereof.

A group of pilgrims, it might be said, are on their way to New York City.

Gnostcs, led by decadent poet Charles Swinburne, arrive to join the pilgrimage; they explain to any pilgrim willing to listen that the physical world is condemned to perpetual darkness because the Almighty’s female aspect messes up by abandoning her binary male partner ~ leaves him behind in the far off spiritual wilderness.

Consequently finds her incomplete self mating with a smooth-talking, malevolent Demiurge:

She slays, and her hands are not bloody
She moves as a moon in the wane
White-robed, and thy raiment is ruddy
Our Lady of Pain
(Charles Swinburne: Dolores)

Burlesqued it appears in these lines from Bob Dylan’s book:

& kill babies among lady shame
good looks & her constant foe
torn sawyer of the breakfast cereal
causing all females paying
no attention to this toilet massacre to be
hereafter called LONZO
(Bob Dylan; Tarantula)

Suggests to this reader that the earthly male companion to the lady of shame and pain be no other than Mario LANZA!

Johnny and Prudence are lovers in a squeaky-clean movie entitled “The Midnight Kiss”. It stars Mario Lanza and Kathryn Grayson; she’s an aspiring young opera singer who falls in love with an Italian truck driver; and he with her; they perform in an opera together.

In the movie, handsome Mario Lanza dresses up as a nineteenth-century military officer.

Could be that the lines below, from “Tarantula”, undermine the storyline of the motion picture ~ blasts it with burlesque ~ (B)road saves the clean!

The word “censor” plays off against “sensor”, and gets mixed into the soupy literary broth with a good sprinkling  of ‘s’ alliteration:

The censor in a twelve wheel drive semi
stopping in for donuts
& pinching the waitress
he likes his women raw & with syrup
he has his mind set on becoming a famous soldier
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)

Be that as it may, the story of our adventurous pilgrims continues ~

the wife of Roy Rogers meets up with Lilith, Adam’s first wife – that “femme fatale” Debbie Reynolds.

Deb featured in the movie “How The West Was Won” as Lilith Prescott, a riverboat – singer; Gregory Peck as a gambler:

& debbie reynolds, she comes along
& both her & dale, they start shacking up
in the newspapers
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)

Debbie especially is real bad:

Lilith teaches her new husband, Bubba
how to use deodorant
also teaches him that
"stinky doo doo' means nasty filth
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)

In the movie, she sings of the new Promised Land:

Away, away
Come away with me
Where the grass grows wild, the winds blow free ...
And I'll give you a home in the meadow
(Debbie Reynolds: A Home In The Meadow ~ Cahn, et. al.)

19: The Golden Gate

by Larry Fyffe

Under the moon, a bunch of Solipsists, Realists and Absurdists join in on the philosophical discussions by pilgrims as they wend their way to New York City.

Monty Hall, down from Winnipeg, shouts out, “How does it feel? Let’s make a deal!”

The show’s a hit, and still making the rounds:

I pick a number between one and two
And ask myself what would Caesar do
(Bob Dylan: My Own Version of You)

Contestants in the original TV show, dressed in absurd costumes, have the numbers 1, 2, and 3 to chose from; they have to cope with the game-show host’s interference, and could end up ‘winning’ a worthless booby prize; that is, they get “Zonked!”

In the tale told below, the narrator thereof decides to change from a Solipsist into a Realist after he realizes that Zonk, a boxer who’s real name is Danny, be the booby prize in this round, and would knock him into  little pieces should the narrator/contestant pick the wrong door to open:

(M)e - I started wondering about whether anybody existed
but I never pushed it
especially when Zonk was around
Zonk hated himelf & when he got high
he thought everybody was a mirror
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)

The remaining Solipsists continue to argue among themselves as to whether they are all alone, or not:

Justine was always trying to prove she existed
as if she really needed proof
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)

Note that the word “diddley” means “absolutely nothing”:

- Ruthy - she was always trying to prove Bo Diddley existed
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)

To confuse matters, Monty puts on a phonograph record:

Tell you Mona, what I wanna do
Build my house next door to you
Can I see you sometime
We can go kissing through the blind ...
Can I see you in the front
Listen to my heart go bumpity bump
(Bo Diddley:  Mona)

& Zonk he was trying to prove that he existed just for Ruthy
but later on said that he was trying to prove he existed to himself
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)

Meantime, Mona tells Bo what she wants to do ~ find a bridge between all-out sensual pleasure, and complete asceticism ~ the ‘golden mean’ – apparently in

San Francisco:

Mona - she resembles a sexy Buddha
& always looks like she's standing over the Golden Gate
(Bob Dylan: Tarantula)


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