Some time before the Jack Kirby show organized by Russ “Karaoke Fanboy” Kazmierczak, I mentioned to Russ that my favorite Kirby-drawn superhero was Black Bolt, leader of the diasporadic Inhumans. Later I found out that Black Bolt’s full name according to Wikipedia is Blackagar Boltagon. Isn’t that awful?
On my birthday Russ presented me with a Black Bolt action figure. (Russ has a thing for action figures.) When you push in his tummy (Black Bolt’s, not Russ’s) his arms come up, making his membranous sidewings flight-ready. For Black Bolt can fly. He can also use that tuning fork on his head to harness electrons, combining them with a mysterious, unknown subatomic particle that emanates from the speech center of his brain. (Black Bolt dares not join the Karaoke Fanboy in song; his unleashed voice shatters mountains.)
Sure he’s preposterous. But so was that clumsy-spoken, tablet-wielding, bush-talking Moses, on whom Black Bolt, I contend, is at least loosely based.
As for the Fanboy, here’s a double acrostic I did of him at the Cholla branch of the Phoenix Public Library, finding, to my delight, that I may return to the same drawing-on-scrap proclivity that served me in such good stead when I was working for Sedona Winds.
Kirbyphile & He-Man buff
Artist, songster, other stuff
A rustlin’hustler gives a damn
And breaks down doors with splinter’d jamb
O Action Figure–go deploy
O key to living: ROCK that toy
The transcription does not preserve the acrostic, but it’s more coherent.
Russ has a new chapbook out. He honored me by asking me to write the Introduction. Here is an excerpt from my introduction, but be warned: it contains at least one cussword.
William Blake cried in print I want! I want! and then Erica Jong quoted him in Fear of Flying. Philip Jose Farmer wrote “The Lovers,” a landmarkedly explicit work of science fiction, and he also wrote Image of the Beast/Blown, even more explicit, which features two of the weirdest and most frightening women you’ll ever care to read of. Edna St. Vincent Millay wrote “What Lips My Lips Have Kissed,” which is heartbreakingly confessional and revelatory of the need and ache which drives us and drives us away. And Dorothy Parker wrote “Travel, trouble, music, art/A kiss, a frock, a rhyme;/I never said they steal my heart,/But still, they pass the time.” That Dorothy could do anything, including leading a horticulture. (“You can lead a horticulture, but you cannot make her think,” she answered instantly, after she was asked to use the word Horticulture in a sentence.) And she was rumored to have sent a message to her publisher who was nagging her about a deadline while she was on her honeymoon, “Too fucking busy, and vice versa.”
Into the midst of this pantheon of twisted romantics strides Russ Kazmierczak . . .