by Alan Britt That’s the funny thing about heart disease; no matter what, it always reserves season tickets to the local symphony, Beethoven’s String Quartet in Hellish Existence, or even his Eroica, sans Bonaparte. Imagine Beethoven on his deathbed celebrating life, remembering stories about black rains flooding Venetian canals and mildewing the cobblestones of 17th Century Vermeer townhouses; or, perhaps, you’d prefer, instead, the movie star type that Dion DiMucci sang about. Hell, you might even dream about a superficial solution to all the world’s problems. The fact is, the perennial court jester, a la Hamlet, held his own for quite awhile, until a CEO discovered him wiling away his time in a boxcar bound for glory filled with 50-millimeter new-age cannons. I believe that love is still, however, willing to climb the lattice of windy eyelashes, instead of using a glass elevator; it’s merely what our god-forsaken culture requires of silly humans. But who am I to question Darwin’s heroes of the Industrial Revolution? What’s that you’re hiding inside the worsted wool pockets of your soul? A second ago, I saw you! Sometimes, standing here in Ophelia’s moonlit grave, waving my wooden sword through ironic lamplight, I hope I’ll be around long enough to kiss your crumbling headstone.