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at once historical, profane, blasphemous, comedic and vulgar

"In the classical argots of  Petronius,  Rabelais,  Chaucer,
  Shakespeare,
Lenny Bruce,  Guy Ritchie,  James Joyce,  David Jones"


   Reviews & Comments

      
 Wayne Pounds :


The Canaanite Gospel: A Mediation on Empire is a keyboard calliope played by a Lenny Bruce on stinkweed who has absorbed by osmosis a library of first-century texts. He takes on the Jesus seminarians, Liberal and Conservative, routing them and all other wannabe rationalizers of scripture by doing impersonations of a legion of characters who were part of the events that took place in Judea during Holy Week of the year 33 BCE. The Canaanite Gospel records eyewitness depositions, which together make up this Gospel.

There is a human disorder here, but the plot carries the reader through it, and thematically the focus is clarity incarnate: 88 monologues on empire, religion, and political struggle, set during the Roman occupation of Judea and Perea during Holy Week on the year that Jesus of Nazareth was crucified, traditionally 33CE. The lessons for the American Empire of today are too apparent to require statement here. As Parcelli notes in his preface, one of the great ironies of history is that Christianity, with "its idealized bromide of universal peace and love," should allow itself to be co-opted by the declining Roman Empire to emerge as its "theocratic spawn."

The book's primary literary inspiration may be David Jones, who after WWI wrote long poems like "Anathemata" implicitly comparing the Roman and British empires. Present also is the ghost of Ezra Pound, who made a comparable juxtaposition of eras in "Homage to Sextus Propertius." Maybe Pound is the more appropriate citation, for his "Propertius" showed poets the use of a persona to double the poetic voice--that is, make it speak more than one idiolect at a time.

The power of these monologue meditations comes from a bravura use of language reminiscent of Joyce or Burgess. The 88 monologues are a calliope of argots, "profane, blasphemous, obscene and peppered with ethnic slurs." In his preface, Parcelli warns the uninitiated reader (this book is not for children) and justifies his practice by citing David Jones. The latter, recalling the importance of profanity among the troops, speaks of a discourse so conditioned by the use of profanity as to seem liturgical, giving "a kind of significance, and even at moments a dignity, to our speech." Over the variety of argots and polyglot slang is spread the sauce of East End Cockney, hot enough to spice up any literary dish.

The poems should be thought of as performances. That is what the figure of Lenny Bruce and the word "monologues" are telling us. To witness the author in performance, look him up on Youtube. There you will find him in the persona he adopts for this book, that of Simon Kananaios (Simon the Canaanite), aka Simon the Zealot, collector of depositions.

Ours is a glorious age for Biblical scholarship. To the known 22 gospels, a 23rd has been added.


























Jennifer J. :

Carlo Parcelli's Caananite Gospel is a work of astonishing wit and
temerity that infuses the Synoptic Gospels with vitality, relevance,
and urgency by breaking open the complacent vanity which has
enrobed the gospels in recent memory.   Rather than being a mere
work of transgression, his iconoclastic monologues breathe new life
into the horrendous scene of Roman Empire and bureaucratic disdain
that crucified the most creative soul to spring from that desert ground.

The interpretation of the actors at the scene of the crucifixion is
entirely original. For those who can get beyond the twinge of
discomfort caused by Parcelli's way of infusing a raw humanity into
the gospels in order to resurrect the story with new power and
relevance, there is a lot to be gained by thrusting oneself onto the
scene and being surrounded by the lives Parcelli creates from his
imagination, pouring out vivid dialect and rampant irony.


Jack Foley
Senior Editor
FlashPoint Journal of the Arts & Politics:

The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John report two stories of what
happened after Jesus of Nazareth died.  One story went on to conquer
the Western World.  The Canaanite Gospel proclaims the rejected story--
in a multitude of voices low and high, imperial and insurrectionary--Roman,
Galilean, Jebusite, Greek--familiar names among them, like Lazarus,
Herod Antipas, Mary Magdala, Barabbas--but telling most unfamiliar tales.

Ferocious, hilarious, deeply and richly imagined, The Canaanite Gospel
projects a world as new and undiscovered as it is also disturbingly
recognizable.



order through
Amazon or Country Valley Press
"So's the boys at the pub ask,
if he's resurrect, where the fuck is he?"

            -Lazarus

Poet Vaudevillian
Carlo Parcelli
(performances or readings available)
The Canaanite Gospel
A Meditation on Empire
88 Monologues

Country Valley Press / FlashPoint
ISBN 978-0-9820196-2-7      $11.95

What actually transpired Easter Week/Passover 33 A.D.?
The Resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth was a Hoax!

Culled from First Century Texts and drawn from dozens of biblical and secular sources, these monologues tell a revisionist tale of what transpired in Judea, Easter Week/Passover 33 AD and beyond during the reign of the Roman Emperor Tiberius.     

In the classical argots of Petronius, Rabelais, Chaucer, Shakespeare, Lenny Bruce, Guy Ritchie,
James Joyce, David Jones, Cockney and the world's myriad cryptolects, The Canaanite Gospel strips bare the New Testament canard of the Resurrection of Yeshu of Nazareth and pokes a
stick in the eye of the Synoptic Gospels.

The Canaanite Gospel 2010

For more info or to schedule a performance
contact:  Carlo Parcelli at 301-927-8323
email:  alphavillebooks@verizon.net

Mr. Parcelli is a founding editor of:

FlashPoint: A Literary Journal of the Arts and Politics
www.flashpointmag.com