six of them

enstrangening. he's funny to make up a word. he wants you to count it among the most of your treasures. something for the kids once you're gone. it will bring a general smile. part of their face they've saved for when. once you've settled to pond bottom with the bright algae & soothing scum.

====================

sounds like an expert. needs no dictionary. but it's the same. and doesn't expect any money. and plans to be heard later. when everything's gone the signs are still traces. you can pick them up any time if you're the one still following the course our skinny brook ran when the sky mattered after lunch.

=================

or mastered the craft of heaving small forms onto shore. bubbles partook of everything. we're bent but bodies. wet with w. with i. with t. mastered as a novice who's lost in some words. nothing but big black glasses. or trained to go on with the others. to nest-building lessons. scratching safety sounds good.

============

there wasn't enough salvation for everyone. some went home. some went out. to pages that were patterns. that had gone long enough. to amend the strange & fix our ministry. looking toward right field to plant a city's long. you'd say. shadows. but i meant you needed a standard. a precious template.

=================

we heard 'endlessly inventive' & understood it wasn't meant for us. because our plurals still dribble down the sides of brutal canyons unmanaged by hope. managed by gravity. you don't know, do you. you're accusing us of. not cruelty. wavering in a light worth blaming. intending to pick it up later.

==============================

the horrible human things we took for learning. they hurt us in bottles. broken we took them up. tried to smash them forcefully toward the distance. it didn't take. but on the horizontal our eyes went historical burnt and bright. a used up splendor for a time of stopping and stalling. go on.


fourteen of us

- my line go how it works contra fidgets & umbrage for the sake of asking

- a long way home put me together fearful for the hell of it

- is someone a father trepid & in on it ghosty on the edges written by

- brilliant made me of light & eager to get a friend on the record

- my line go on of whom in personality he shimmered & quipped 'to write'

- stressors like the whole of it in good judgments we are a reply & had to be tough

- we are a reply and had to be thick as the barkers forming up carnivals

- the line go forth a bridle path birdbath a flickered nuisance to say

- help me up to wisdom towers to push me off the windy tops the lungs

- or lunges out a grab at the crumbling score he'd have to find the point

- my voices go on top where the waves fit sky just right without blinking by

- thrown it away to the clown's corner inside red & unjust as a giant bug

- my line go sooner on than a vanish than a whip than a long sour clock runs

- or just stop it after one more breath your legs may find work at the pedals


thoughts about poetic practice that call to mind the hours of sitting in grade school and high school and college classrooms where he hid between the lines of assigned texts and whispered out from them something like well here you are at last

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem

the same poem the same poem the same poem


last in class

you are reading and not reading. while eating

you brought your broken imagination. in full

you can't pretend there's not a line but. at the end

you knew there was only one comprehension. compressed

you sped through the disorganized. and split

you were that forest with ocean's accent. at once

you never say 'vomit" in a poem. omit it

you go because I can't say anything. I say

 

take the test take it and over again take the test

maybe we'll have learned at last how to have to at last


an arc

derivative of the crudest things,

neo-crud, meta-blurg, it could be

one thing or another. enchanting

well, hark, there's a word and a

bunch of them then flatter rules

a photography of pages normally

or merely intellectual not some

blended material goop. ecstatic.

 


of course

you needed to say I you did

but it was obviously still

a friendly voice we needed

to picture hearing someone

for orientation and for re-

assurance the codes went on

long into the night without

us not that this is anyone

me speaking to you not that

a mountain walks into a bar

and calls me a liar I guess

that’s right you needed to

say this lacks intimacy as

a feeling here’s another one

in the cold room with me not

reading not forcing weather

into its own perfect frame


how to know him

No one is reading dreams. Blueprints

will have something to like say any

poem might collapse into these next

vague things. Did he really say that

our stoned beginnings were crushing

the next and the next chances for a

neo-baroque revival? And when did he

think we'd finally wake to his silly

request for a carbonated beverage? I

think he's part of the plan for good—

a parcel of inability. We'll let it be.


nine items

breaking the law just

that there’s a space or a little room

for this other

 

“and its main purpose is to benefit the wealthy”

willing wanting waiting for a god who

has a hell & knows how to use it

 

you must be about something essential

beyond these disconnections

but why when the nightclouds listen for bats

 

when anyone’s demonic pronouncing

spills over into stable authoritatives about

why bother with all this

 

the judge said another habit “was very bad”

and we understood him to mean a snobbery

had taken hold of the young man

 

that one part lost puts me “at a loss”

where’s the sense a fat gourd skillfully recites

“season of mellow fruitfulness” and itches

 

the world-story practically begs for

a description of race in tart lemony vanishing ink

not yet commercially available

 

a quorum of bearded young men wordlessly

announces the sanctity of was it

a dreadful nineteenth century proposition

 

it’s terrible hard to catch some good way back

every inch a blessed broken way

a permeable cartography a will


ten sentences

clip it present it you won’t need to say it

 

a grief goes uselessly past the daily yeses

 

distinct as a causal casualty a casual tear

 

what’s capable of bad phrase after bad word

 

what’s the word for this after being someone

 

never found the voice for the gender’s real

 

maybe a little touched by an occasional one

 

it takes the place of a form that would have

 

the old when the old were old a funny tale

 

the wild too happy to be there young an egg

 


tough in autumn

one whole thing whose wild geese

were you. afraid.

for that charm did you think

poets put away

their other life to have read

with mother’s insight.

what a thing now for sex

in the air.

but the geese hardly came crawling

refused our groan

our embarrassing cuts maples gone bright

as far verse.

notes a distance where they were

as not anything.


the body

Living inside an illegible part of the world you’d get busted by the beauty every time. You’d have nothing to say because the wrong profile. Far from them always. Understand it’s been a mistake so long you take it for your own tree your own shade. And the storms man. The storms take it up to the limit and farther on. Just because they can but they shouldn’t. Like you saying what comes to mind because you have one. Ears too. But then here’s the next real quiet part. And that goes on long and long.

 You read enough about these arts and there goes the willow tree there goes the strong sun. How even the words will disappear. You find the brook and seize the day. We find you under stones in the mossy parts hoping in the muddy creases for something to show like a savior. It’s the silence it likes. Then figures. Not yet.