Death—accomplice to Chaos, coin-toss of Chance, Yea's flip-side, a swarthy negation whose shadow cannot help but fall as night descends upon day—Was, Is, and Ever Shall Be. But When was Death born? Did Life give it birth? Or is Life Death’s solitary offspring (the only begotten Sun of an Infinite Dusk)? And What breathed first to gasp its last? And Where did that happen? And Who was responsible? Death puzzles the puzzlers and gainsays the gurus. Death spells THE END. Death decomposes whatever exists, regardless its composition (or composure). Death begs the question Why, and answers with an echo swallowed by a vacuum.

Still… off/on, up/down, left/right, white/black belong to the same choir, bass and treble harmonizing to the melody of Antithesis, forte/pianissimo indispensable in their rendering definition to the ultimate jingle—with Death not so much an absence as an equally contributing partner, half of the living-breathing/dying-expiring age-old duet… sung differently by different camps. The Lesser and Great Apes (gulf ever widening, damning the former to extinction, the latter to domination) voiced their ditties and dirges in diverse keys. Juke and his lot, the Errant Pair and theirs (having trudged, hopped, skipped, and jumped through Cre-volution’s hoops) arrived at points so disparate it hardly seemed they shared the same Progenitor. Man relied upon God to deny the association; Simians went into hiding in hopes of weathering their distant cousins’ storm.

Australopithecus, Pithecanthropus erectus, Neanderthal, Homo Sapiens (take your pick as to which group served to mother Adam, to father Eve—that prototypical couple believed by some to be the brainchild of Satan’s Superior)—were claimants to the Throne of Beings—Original only as pretenders, mere highlights or disasters along ascendant/descendant lines.

Whereas howlers, marmosets, pygmy chimps, and bush babies pointed (if by no other trait than their diminishing dimensions) to the smallest of the small (AKA Simians), shrunk to inconspicuousness, despite their capacious gray matter. "Endowed with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal Man," reclusive, herbivorous, philosophical, Simians put to shame the "dumb-animal" myth, by speaking long before Babel’s Tower fractured the universal tongue (albeit through speech ‘inaudible’), by appreciating how intelligence might be applied to indigenous purposes (learning Nature’s laws with a mind to integration not to standing apart), by cultivating Primitive Modes that conformed to codes of proper conduct (self and selfishness never advanced as doctrines in lieu of the Greater Good), by keeping wants aligned with needs (those needs, in turn, kept modest), and by recognizing Chaos as the Cosmic Administrator (whose Rule was most notorious for its Absolute Apathy). Like the Zen adage, ‘if you don’t understand, things are such as they are; if you do understand, things are such as they are,’ Simians grasped Life’s ‘suchness’ and felt fulfilled within its spheroid boundaries.

Not overnight, needless to say; Cre-volution dragged its heels (as monkeys twiddled their unopposed thumbs), doing wind-sprints every now and then for Fun’s sake, but mostly inching along like an oxidized Slinky. Juke caused trouble (in absentia), passing on his regenerate degenerate gene, successive incarnations succeeding in refinements of carnage, greed, and malice—with wars, in due course, breaking out too often between neighboring troupes. Ah, Juke! Who could have predicted a season of cannibalistic snacks ultimately would have led to Auschwitz, East Timor, and Wounded Knee? Or to Shakespeare, on the brighter side, Beethoven, Gandhi, Picasso? A wonderful, woeful warp was Character’s transmogrification—Simian ancestors achieving a similarly fickle state, (with which they coped in a slightly, but tellingly different manner).


It was a day...