The Damnation of Bates

An Antepic1 of High Technology Labor


Prolog2

On hearing of the Damnation of Faust one day,
I started a consideration of things to say,
Destined to be not a heroic epic,
But th' imitation: an antepic.
So, O Muse, your light exposed my affairs
To the sunny rays of understanding's wares:
How 'tis wonderous when a thought becomes a jumble
And how so many come out in a tumble:
Of stolen souls, of wealth, of family gone,
Of international dateline unknown,
Of Sabbath lost and humanity dismissed
And idols worshipped and boundaries missed.
Then you ignite my mind with metaphors
Of dragons, tapestries, cacoons, and whores,
To organize the plethora of notions
Into an antepic of true emotions.
Enticed into the sacred world by you,
I organize the work by number clues
To give ancient, yet still current, meaning
For the discerning reader's soulful gleaming.
And as I put pen to pad yet more emerges
In details, ever tightening as the tale converges;
Each thought not forced, but by the power of prayer
Released into the poem's thoroughfare,
Until, anon, I'm free of the prophetic Fates
And we can see and hear the Damnation of Bates.3

Movement IV: St. George and the Dragon

But on his brest a bloudie Crosse he bore,
The deare remembrance of his dying Lord,
For whose sweete sake that glorious badge he wore,
And dead as liuing euer him ador'd:
...
And euer as he rode, his hart did earne
To proue his puissance in battell braue
Vpon his foe, and his new force to learne;
Vpon his foe, a Dragon horrible and stearne.

A louely Ladie rode him faire beside,
Vpon a lowly Asse more white then snow,
Yet she much whiter, but the same did hide
Vnder a vele, that wimpled was full low,
And ouer all a blacke stole she did throw,
As one that inly mournd: ...
Edmund Spenser
Færie Qveene
Canto I, stanzas 2-4

Canto 1: Eternal Love4

Unfolding, one nephesh, enfleshéd soul
Entwined and interpenetrated one,
As body, mind, and psyche each in whole:
By love, that's always started, never done
Coheres in seamless, timeless implicon --
The root and wing when life and death unroll.

O Love, our Love, woven into a tapestry
  Of pictures marching across our time:
   the warp of soul and the woof of body
   the warp of mind and the woof of brain
   the warp of feeling and the woof of heart
 Of walking with grandpa
  of seeing a shooting star
   of romance and dance.

Connections, when unbroken, lead through all,
From child to child through generations on,
Through parent's parents back to Saul and Gaul:
Of stardust are we made -- we're not our own --
Of common other, we're never alone,
And touched by each, for each we're given call.

Youthfully embraced -- all rolled up
You and I
Then unfurled in wings
For new threads
  the warp and woof ever lengthening
                    ever enriched.

We, the anima and animus of Bates,
Entangled helix, youthful lover's wedding --
Two necessary sides, ordained as mates;
Generative, creating mystery, threading
New narrative of moons, and færie heading
For the next and next, unlocked and opening gates.
 

Movement I: Anti-Christ: Careerism

 

Canto 1: Oblivion

Like a meteorite ascending slow
In the blue transparent endless sky
A streak, gleaming white,
Soars silently and straight
Across the International Date Line
  -- heading East, heading Home

Its metal cocoon roars in the thin, high air
Air currents streaming over and under
  its swept wings,
Above protecting ports, evenly spaced.

Behind the shielding of one port
A head bends over a laptop,
Oblivious to jet, IDL, and seatmate.

It is Bates tapping away, compiling notes and reports,
Enrapt by his career,
Unaware today's the Sabbath.
    

Canto 2: Too Open

Bates' stomach falls
  -- unbidden, a memory, an indicting memory:
  if it gets back to his boss ...
In his enthusiastic rush
  in his absorption in the problem
    in his pride of knowing the answer:
He mispoke to
  client-enemy
 revealing too much
   exposing his company's intellectual property
   (of his own creation) and ...
 they were pleased.
Now they know the solution
  to use
     to share
        to squeeze his out -- if they wish
Bates hopes nothing will come of it
  -- but some day
         some haunted day
     his savior might rear its head
         and breath fire upon him.

We are trolls -- he thought --
hidden away in our crystal towers,
blind to the Cosmos
unknown to the world
consuming each other
  in time
    in effort
      in feeling
         in soul

Out of the portal to the East,
  Bates could see a small cloud --
   dark, brooding,
   subaudibly rumbling.
      

Canto 3: Dragon

The dragon, its emerald scales inflated,
   surveyed the world.
Its long, powerful, arrow shaped tail
  wrapped around its belly.
Its wings fluttered in impatience.
Its nostrils flared and breathed smoky fog
  across the landscape.
Its multitudinous heads swayed:
  some snapping and biting at each other,
  some embracing, necks wrapped around each other,
  at other times embracing and biting.5
The landscape was ripe for the pickings
  inhabited by priests and serfs
  filled with gold, platinum, rubies, and diamonds
    euros, rubles, rands, and dollars
    endless treasure.

One head of the dragon surveyed the sky.
  Bates caught its eye
   -- an acrolyte destined for priesthood.

Canto 2: Alienation

O animus, you push me back, your twin.
Something seduces you away from me.
For what curvaceous beauty do you yearn?
Beyond I see the gleam of the falsely free,
Of dragon's gleaming hoard and cries of glee;
For this I dread, my love, our love you'll spurn.

O Love, our Love is shredding;
  the warp and woof are pulling apart;
  the ends are frayed
    -- no longer new weaves are woven,
    -- no longer new leaves are sprouted.
Today's scenes are black and white
  routine & repetitious,
  loosely knit
  falling apart.

O Love, wherefore are you? whene'er are you?
No helix any longer is our laying.
You are distracted, drifting right on cue --
O Bates can you not hear what I am saying!
Your anima is reaching for you, staying
Whatever and whose ever line you hew.

O Love, we are separating:
  our warp and woof no longer interwoven
  our arms no longer embracing.
You are deaf and mute.
I reach out, but you do not reach back.

O like a wooden block that's split asunder,
Our animus and anima are axed
Apart ascreaming -- our endurance taxed:
You have been lured by luminescent plunder
Whose lightening amidst resounding thunder
Sear-brands us and our splitting is climaxed.
 

Canto 4: The Commute

Bates' neighbor turns to speak:
  "Did you see that magnificient surf!
   Deep blue. The  beach pure white!
   What an experience of summer in winter!"
Yes, Bates' thought, its confusing changing seasons.
He smiled, "I was in business meetings."

From touchdown to conference
                to conference
                ...
                to take off
All just the same as at home:
From commute to office to commute,
One land is the same as another.

He needs to get this report done.
His boss wants it as soon as he lands.
And its important so to move to the next step.

From touchdown to conference
               to conference
               ...
               to take off.
    

Canto 5: Promotion

Bates' hopes rise:
  If this pans out, he's promoted
   -- finally.
  For years he's been working above his level
   -- he knows it, though never spoken.
  Now his boss promises
   -- if just this one more effort pans out.
  For all of the criticism
      all the humiliation
      all the unforgiveness
  a promotion!
  that will make up for it,
       won't it?

A promotion will secure his place:
  will set him on the road to
    higher places
    more money
    more prestige
    more power

Bates' fears converge:
  What if his boss self-destructs?
    -- he's out of control
      -- flustered
        -- stressed
          -- unpredictable
  What if he's chewed up in all of this?

Through his portal:
The East grows darker.
Bates can see the silent white sparks
  of Ouranos' flashing eyes
  and the faint rumble of conquering hoofbeats.11
      

Canto 6: In the Belly of the Beast

The Temple of Treasured Wisdom sparkled in the færie light:
   Its romanesque columns stretched above the sky;
   Its double doors, golden metalic, swing open.
Beyond the locked gratings:
   The treasure of the world:
     technical knowledge
     new inventions
     new investments
     new resources
     engineers
     applied scientists
     investors

And outside, the emerald dragon laid,
   serene smiles along its snouts.
It is the guardian
  and they have fed him.

The dragon licks its chops.
In  its belly
  one more "career man" being
  digested and consumed.
The fire in its belly ignites
  contentedly he breathes smoke and steam.

This meal was tasty;
  this one will help satisfy my endless hunger
    and give me strength.

The dragon keeps vigilant
  for the next morsel
  approaching the Temple of Treasured Wisdom,
  gaining strength for the assault.

Canto 3: Lost Souls

Where have you gone?
Our tapestry is ripped
  And you have fallen through its gapping holes.
I can no longer hang onto you.
Like free-fall, I go after you ...

What place is this? There's brilliance, yet its dark:
The trees are sparkling green, but flat and thin,
Just two dimensional, a paper lark
And cardboard clouds, a living manikin --
A picture really, life ungenuine:
Their plots and plans bereft of living spark.

I wander the plastic streets looking for you.
I risk the deep chaos in this shallow world.
I wander this void
  and you are not there.

I cry upon the breeze:
I shout upon the storm:
  who knows where you are?

From behind the trees, the manikins and clouds,
From the lightless world, where 2 by 2 is not four,
From a world of wondering, colliding shrouds,
There steps on holy quest to Nevermore,
Another anima in dragon lore
To seek her animus in pointless crowds.

So you, too, are looking for yours
  fallen through your tapestry,
  speeding past God's creation?
Together we wander the alleys of the void
  and risk the chaos.

So side by side we trot along the road,
Vanquishing preaching trolls and empty knights6
And exposing cryptic, ruling cybercode7:
Answer each to th' last dare
And become a millionaire,
Then marry a millionaire
Right then and there.8
Our purifying swords relieve the plights
Of th' innocent like blinding glare of brights9
And lead them all into a faire abode.

Now we stand before the dragon's lair:
  The Temple of Treasured Wisdom.
  The guardian's heat blasting us;
  The dragon's stench choking us.

The marble columns, white and Roman, rise
Through foggy, swirling, damp and filthy air.
Alcoves around the gallery advertize
The spirit looting, radiating glare
Of spoils of a successful trillionaire:
Out of which lead and gold materialize.
 

Movement II: Anti-Spirit: Consumerism

 

Canto 1: Paper Millionaire

Bates pulls up his spreadsheet.
There he was a millionaire:
  all those great performing stocks;
  a few he needed to sell off;
  but a few more trades
  and his value will go up 40%10 or more.
The company stock was dynamic.
The high tech stuff exciting
  -- part of the growing millennium.

If this opportunity works out,
  Bates could look forward
    -- to stock options
        tied to the company's future.

Image Bates with Gates!
    

Canto 2: Homeless

What he could do with all of that?
He could move his family to the country
  -- to a mansion
     along the lake
     with a deck hanging over the beach
     and a view
     with two BMWs.
When he took a vacation
  they could travel anywhere -- around the world
And send his kids to the finest universities.

Bates' heart skipped a beat:
  The day he left returned to his psyche:
  His wife was tired of his leaving
    -- and leaving
           and leaving
              -- and coming.
  She was a single parent
    -- alone
       -- burdened
  If he went, he need not come home.

The mansion dissolved
  and in its place resolved
     a flash of dark, dank cave of stench
   then resolved into the home he knew best:
     his office in the company HQ
     in the Temple of Treasured Wisdom.

Through his portal,
  the darkness thickened across the East.
The clouds flashed red with Ouranos' angry eyes
  and thundered with restive hoofbeats.12
      

Canto 3: Ouroboros

The dragon gloated in the Temple,
    bright and clear around
    the dark and dank dragon
  filled with rubies and emeralds
    sparkling in the light of dragon's fire
    with gold and silver
    with shares and options.

The dragon's belly was full
  of wizards and
    crystal balls and 
       staffs.

The dragon's belly growled:
  hungry again
    hungry ever
  never enough
  hungry eternally, insatiable.

The dragon curved around its treasures
  and swallowed its tail.

Canto 4: Stolen Souls


They stand in the Temple's lobby:
  just inside
  before locked gates
  awash in harsh light
  surrounded by moving numeric lights
     fiber optics,
       beepers,
           cell phones.
An uniformed troll sits at a desk.


My love, you of a sudden disappeared,
Enticed away from me, your name was called
By strangish voices into worlds so weird.
The dragon bit by bit our soul enthralled
And then demanded and overhauled
You threatening your home thus engineered.

There, there beyond the gate!
  Do you see through the crystal?
  My soul! My love!

Oh! They are there, in th' Temple's sacred place --
O friend, in earthy Wisdom's sacred time --
In gilded prisons locked by their own grace.
Condemned eternally are they to climb
Each step upward e'er narrowing to prime
As one over one is sorted in the race.

The troll speaks for the dragon
  deep, resonant, reverberating:
  It is mine.
  It serves me.
  Its time -- all of it -- is mine.
  Its genius is mine.
  My needs are its most important priority.
  Among my riches,
    it is the most glittering.

O look, that one with a pocket full of pens
And with his internetted fruit of Eden,13
How he surpasses all the busy dens
And walks right past those trolls14 and wizards needing
To work unceasing towards the dragon's feeding
Goes out returning after his amens.
 

Canto 4: High Tech Toys

Wireless and battery driven.
What a laptop!
Very high density bandwidth
   through RF scattering and infrared;
Super high capacity bandwidth
   24 hours of uptime.

Bates admired his laptop:
He could surf the net without any wires!
Ether connection, invisible, unseen, untouchable:
Like his life.

Bates admired his laptop:
   with fractal storage,
   and 366 GHz speed,
   and HDTV.
He could pack nearly infinite information into it!
Information is power,
   the more the more powerful:
Consumable and usable.
    

Canto 5: Human Commodities

I'm just a commodity.
  -- just a resource
     -- a human resource
         along with hardware resources of disk space, servers, and capacity
         and software resources of functions and capabilities.

I'm just an entry in a ledger:
  time to schedule
  competency to use
interchangable with equal time and competancy.
If I go, I'm replaceable;
If I stay, I'm replaceable.

No soul or feeling or vision --
  only a classification and paygrade.

That's all.

Though his portal,
  a great black wall charged with flashing lightening
  -- solid, rumbling, trembling consuming hoofbeats
  -- races towards Bates.15
      

Canto 6: Pimps & Prostitution


Your labor,
  your skills
    your time,
      your ideas,
        your creativity:
All you have sold to me.
They are mine to barter.
My treasure,
  my power,
    my profit
You are to do whatever I say,
  work at whatever I command.

Your beliefs,
  Your family,
    Your life
are in service to me.
I am the Dragon.

Canto 5: Raped Souls16

O what an alternate reality!
A zone between the night and the day transfixed;
A self-advancing principality.
By caustic poison privily intermixed
In its spirit our humanity is nixed:
Our mail dissolves in amorality.

Do you smell that stench?
Do you hear the crackling?
Do you feel the heat?

In the dark of the world,
  we are being stalked --
as alone and disconnected as my Bates,
despite our sight.

The morality of merit: striving, straining
Beyond the pacesetter against the odds:
More power, prestige, career and wealth attaining,
Defiant, self-contained the world's new gods
Who follow where'er the dragon trods,
On work relying, from the Sabbath abstaining.

Celebrate!
To beat out the competition, the customer is god!
As loyal subjects we will do anything for our god:
  burn the midnight oil
    obliterate the Sabbath
      put family on hold
And we will be successful! For we are the best!
The competition responds
  and we repartee
And we succeed!
Celebrate!
We are the phantom servants of the Dragon!

Look!
On the shore of those 3 seas,
  surrounded by 3 corn stalks
Stretched across 2 crosses and 3 stakes
A dry IV hanging from his arm,17
A writer! See the pen in his hand!
  And the Apple fallen from the other!
On the screen,
  "I declare a Sabbath for all!"

We must turn away
  before it is too late!
Run while you can!

Oh the pain!

O get it out of me! I'm stripped of power!
My sword against the dragon's scales is shattered
Intruding, ripping, my esteem devoured.18


Eat! Eat! You will eat!
You are too fat! Lose weight!
Dress in my dress or you are worthless!
Join the chat group or be left out!
Consume! Eat! Take!


Nothing is left to me ...
  wrapped in the tattered remains of our tapestry.
      I am spoiled, damaged, consumed and consuming.
 

Movement III: Anti-God: Idolatry

 

Canto 1: Start Up

Bates booted his laptop again.
  How were his financials?
  How were his contacts?
  How were his skills?
Each spread across his multi-colored GUI.

His finances, time, and competency
  were excellant to grow beyond the company
(If I go, there would be no weeping or gnashing of teeth
  just in a day's overcommitted tasks --
  one more task to replace him.
  If he takes a couple of customers,
  well -- that's business.
  We are all whores!)

Maybe, he'll start his own company:
  all his slips and imperfections
  would not jump out at him;
  he could be in control ...
And join Gates ... and unite19 with the Dragon --
    

Canto 2: Hollowed Out

Bates dozed ...
  ... and fell
            fell
              fell
                ...
a shell
  a shed exoskeleton
no feeling
  no brightness
    no darkness
only business
  only marketing
    only mammon ...
fecundity mechanical
  no vision
    no future
  only today
    and the next product

Through his portal,
  the shaking jet yawed and pitched
  in the sea of greenish darkness
  lightening bolts flashed all around
  echoing hoofbeats of pestilence,
the tears of Ouranos pelts the portal
as the jet nosed up to escape the dark anger.20
      

Canto 3: Mammon

In the Temple, the dragon blew a fiery stream.
And the whore rose to mammon
  on a black, sooty pillar:
"O mammon
  each dollar
    each euro
      each yen
  every corporation
    every market
      every share
You give me
  gives me more surety.
The more the more I am safe
         the more I am worthy
More, give me more
  and more whores I will give you
  and more johns I will give you."

That old tempter took to the air
  surveying the landscape:
    looking at 2 o'clock, then at 5 o'clock, then at 8 o'clock;21
  for persons hollowed out
    needing to be filled.
That old tempter held out its treasures:
  SUVs
    mansions
      electronics
        exotic vacations
that vanished the instant they were touched,
 but left a greater hunger
  for yet more
            more
              more
That old scourge
  left a plague of starvation
  in the midst of satiation
  -- gluttonous emaciation
     emaciated gluttony.

Canto 6: The Dragon Chained

I cringe and shrink, my life and soul are battered,
Refusing mammon, unseduced I'm scattered
Among the outcast22 under the dragon's glower.

The dragon cornered them
  leering,
  breathing smoke,
  shedding ashes ...
"You are mine too!
   Give me your treasure!"
It swallows and chews Shaw's anima
And turns towards Bates anima.

O love, my love, depart th' absymal caves.
Alone, in there, detached, there's no affection
And nothing of whate'er our being craves.
Distraught and damaged, for an insurrection
I crave and pray there comes a resurrection:
For truly somewhere there is one who saves.

Out of the shadows,
  Riding upon the 'net,
    Steps the writer
       With golden pen.
The dragon turns and hovers in the air,
  snapping at the writer.
The writer waves the pen and exposes the dragon.
The dragon crumples and falls to the ground.

Reaching out, the writer takes Love's torn tapestry
  and nooses it around the dragon --
  Then hands it to Love
    who leads the dragon through the streets,
      crying ...

"The Rebellion has begun!"
 

Canto 4: Speeding Car

Falling, falling into bottomless darkness:
  Darker shadows grabbing for him:
Bates wakes with a start:
  the vague fear and depression of half-sleep.
Then Bates looks out of the portal of his cocoon
  To the world beyond:
Up in the dark sky the morning star glows,
A sliver of pink glows on the horizon --
  Venus leading Aurora:
  New life following love
Above the lowing clouds, the sky quickly brightens.

Bates stomach sinks.
  The jet throttles back and dives into the driving rain;
  Below, the metro area enlarges;
  The traffic veins stretch in all directions.
Bates sees a BMW weaving, speeding through the traffic ...

Below in her car, Shaw, one hand on the steering wheel
  talks rapidly into her cell phone:
Work can't wait.
She cuts minutes off her valuable schedule --
  weaving in and out
      late -- as usual --
      to an early meeting.

A car glides into her lane,
  she drops her cell phone to grab the wheel ...

Today is Monday ...
  Yesterday was Sunday.
  She worked.
  When did she visit God last?
    

Canto 5: Opening Up

The shell cracks open
  The city below,
  Home
  The lights,
  The people,
  Its history,
  Its troubles
  The tired,
  The poor,
  The hungry
All step out.
For an instant,
  a fleeting moment,
  Bates sees all the world
  And is one with it.
Then he is alone.

Through his portal,
  Bates could see above him
  the lowing, thick, flashing clouds, rumbling and trembling,
  hanging over the world.
      

Canto 6: Power Dissolved

In the town square,
  the dragon chained
   roars and twists
withers
 ignored by the town folk
...
Bates stepped out of his cocoon
  and walked along the umbilicus.
He'll go home to his wife and kids
And suggest they do a Millard Fuller.

Canto 7: "Be It Resolved"

"Be it resolved ...
  that each laborer
  is entitled to a Sabbath
  every week of days
  held sacred and inviolable
  and career comes after
    the Sabbath, the family, and service.23

"Be it resolved ...
  that each person's
  value is intrinsic
  and not dependent on created things ..."24

"Be it resolved ...
  that each laborer's
  time and skills are on loan from God
  and are not owned by the employer ...25

Epilog

O may these mythic words be outward bound
And be creative, challenging old ground,
So that a new event, a new horizon
Shall soon emerge from our Kyrie eleison:
Now that we know about our brother Bates,
What now to act upon the prophetic Fates?
What Spirit must we call on to redeem
Our twin into a healthy cosmic theme?
It is the Spirit Other, Lord of Fools,
Whom Love, affirming and open, Rules,
That calls us into faithful, daring risk,
So the powers strong of damnation to resist.
Let us go and let not the word return
Until fulfilled is our Sabbath concern!

Amen

©2000, John A. Mills


Notes

  1. The poem is an antepic. An epic is a poem of the downfall and rise of heros; of great battles and adventures. But this poem is about the fall of our hero in a slow, grinding down in a consumerist, materialistic, idolatrous world; his rise and redemption is only prophesied. Thus, this is an anti-epic, an antepic.
  2. The prolog describes the creative process that I experienced.
  3. The poem is structured in sacred numbers: There are 3 movements + one more (a 4th movement). Each of the 3 movements represent one person in the anti-trinity of Careerism (anti-savior); Consummerism (anti-spirit) and Idolatry (anti-god). Each movement consists of 6 cantos. Therefore, there are 6 6 6 cantos, the number of the beast. The fourth movement is the movement of prophecy, and establishes a counter to the anti-trinity. Four is completeness and represents Jung's quaterity. It has 7 movements: the number of completeness. It's theme is St. George and the Dragon (the beast). Here, St. George is a writer -- a modern day prophet. Bate's soul is the lady to be rescued. The high technology powers and principalities are the dragon. The dragon is multi-headed: there are many high tech corporations, but like the single body they act in (sub)conscious harmony.
  4. This canto opens the understanding that the person is intended to be whole: body and soul together: nephesh. Together the person is creative and loving. The person, an explication, unfolds from the implicate order; the body being its manifestation, but tightly tied to the soul. It is possible to become so self-alienated that the masculine side (animus) and the feminine side (anima) are torn apart; the explicated body and the soul become lost (as we will describe in subsequent cantos). Then the anima-person wanders, not unfolded and not enfolded -- but lost and alienated. The person, reduced to a animus-person, more body than soul and a wandering anima-person, more soul than body becomes restless and confused.
  5. The dragon is the collective spirit of the high tech industry. Each head is a competitor, sometimes competing, sometimes cooperating and sometimes both. Serfs are consumers tied to the high tech "land" of every new gadget. Priests are its supporters, such as engineers, hackers, etc.
  6. Preaching trolls: the agents of high tech who do not or cannot see the whole world and who push high tech to society's highest priority. Empty knights: the captains of high tech who value only their business needs and do not value other needs. They are hallow.
  7. Cybercode: the Internet, mysterious to most, dominating even the lives of non-users.
  8. S. Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire? 15 February 2000, Fox Broadcasting,
  9. They are innocent in the sense of blissfully ignorant of reality.
  10. 40 = a lot; 40 days in the desert
  11. The First Horse of the Apocalypse: white and conquest (s. Rev. 6:1-2).
  12. Second horse of the Apocalypse: red = civil unrest (s. Rev. 6:3-4).
  13. Apple iMac: an alternative to the PC and a non-industrial tool. Think different!
  14. S. http://library.thinkquest.org/12924/ and http://www.sjgames.com/gurps/Roleplayer/Roleplayer24/NorseTrolls.html Trolls are: blind and hate the daylight turning to stone in the daylight; cannibals, according to Tolkien; and rarely seen as if invisible These are high tech engineers who society at large hardly know about, who work in their cubicles -- beyond the sun -- around the clock, and in the intense competition, consume each other.
  15. The Third Horse of the Apocalyse: black = economic exploitation, see Rev. 6:5-6
  16. Here the writer (St. Geo.) is introduced as slained. St. Geo. was martyred (according to tradition) on 23 Apr 303. Later his legend develops that he survives death and goes on the slay the dragon. Thus the next Movement 4 canto (canto 6) describes the subjugation of the dragon.
  17. St. George was martyred 23 April 303 = XXIII IV CCCIII; hence, 2 crosses, 3 corn stakes, an IV, 3 seas and 3 corn stalks: George is Greek for farmer.
  18. Sword = strength of resolve; dragon's scales = hi tech's intrusive and uncontrolled power: ubiquitous internet, computers, etc.
  19. The ultimate mystical experience: union with God
  20. Fourth Horse of the Apocalypse: pale green = pestilence and famine, s. Rev. 6:7-8
  21. 60 degrees around the compass = 3 even stops.
  22. Outcast = those who cannot participate in the fruits of hi tech, but are constantly bombarded by its promise.
  23. The antidote to careerism.
  24. The antidote to consumerism.
  25. The antidote to idolatry.