Jeff Harrison

The Mortal Enemies of Calculation

Oceanography Fetus,
admit bouquets to the effigy party

Saloon Redefinition,
be a dapper knapsack… dapper knapsacker

Flowerpot Infighting,
only authenticate the forgettable

Mnemonic Pagination,
your bookshelves are frail
rattlesnake them,
rattlesnake them all

Radio-sighting Conundrum,
mechanically bemoan that… wait…
combine Dionysus with hoarding badgers,
then mechanically bemoan that combination

Mark Young

The theory of dyadic rings

A buried UFO slowly
turns my Digital Pen
into a 7-track down-
load of a Wolfmother

album, but this counts
for nothing when it’s
sunny in South London
& the streets are full

of highly trained Re-
naissance musicians
whose white linen suits
& owlish spectacles

add old-world warmth
& charm to a great
place to stop thinking

about digital identity.

 

 

 

storyboard #1

Black & white movies. The March of Time. Backwards. dubesoR. Snow globes down the stairs, the Odessa Steps. Everything intercut, reality / invention. Once again I walk down those ornate baroque corridors, knowing I know nothing of Hiroshima.

Always in black & white. No room for scenic shots. None of those except perhaps as signposts. Otherwise. Film noir.

Color. Occasionally. Kurosawa’s The Ransom. One scene only. In which.

Do I pay the ransom? Do I let the color in?

Mark Russell

Music: Number Five

Some stories are tagged with photos of juveniles,
their animals, their yellow images, Tom and Dick,
and preposterous townsfolk who venerate Canada,
though not during March, nor in meetings
of Gamblers Anonymous, as the workers have said.

So, no more information about the river is necessary.
Regarding its vexed course, nobody is in agreement
except for the existence, somewhere down there,
of the underworld, its dry rats, its vestibules,
the blindfolded walks that guide you to the edge.

Michael S. Hennessey

NO CONTROL

over the speed of sound
our internal monologue or the
rate of attrition we face
the number of footsteps between
your door to mine or
when we’ll meet again

 

 

A SIMPLE FORMALITY

misplaced faith is not enough
to stop the leaking faucets
or reverse past mistakes — your
blushing won’t fade any faster
words come from the chest
and die in midair

 

 

MINUS MINUS

minus the collarbone, a wish
littoral zone lost through repetition
an urgent message lost in
waves of radio static / interference
on the payphone line foretells
an unwelcome visitor’s arrival

 

 

START HERE

there is not enough sleep
or rather a solarized dreamscape
better than the waking world
I anticipate the alarm and
silence it, somewhere keys crash
out of empty pockets

 

 

WHEN THE WAR IS OVER

antennas still bristle the landscape
dogs growl in troubled sleep
at imagined threats — no reason
to jump at every noise
or for bones once broken,
now healed, to ache

 

 

FORTITUDE: A SIGNAL

a disconnection resets the circuit
through timbral shift and ultraviolet
flash — attention spent and spanned
I’ve maintained this vigil for
three weeks — no end approaching
ask me next year

Jenn McCreary

The abyss has its own rewards
for Steve Farmer

I.
For each four-leaf clover
a six-legged frog

For each lickable fury
a feral angel

For each flaming marshmallow
a runaway shopping cart

For each scribbled treasure map
a secret test

For each naked promise
a silkworm intervention

Cellos & snakes at the heart
of every cool mistake

 

 

 

II.
Use this as a compass

Use this for the ritual

Use this for keen mental suffering or distress over affliction or
loss, & chant: pain, begone, I will have no more of thee

Use this bastard wing folded behind your back, your finely tuned
clavicle, your hair as lasso or noose

Use this splitting image, these words (fallen from my mouth), this
door (formerly a window)

Use all our girlhood superstition about scoliosis, hexes, poxes &
penitence

 

 

 

III.
To believe but only sometimes

To unearth a more useful abyss

To seek prophetic messages in the warm glow of yesterday’s shock

To navigate the inevitable underworld with pure conviction

To translate fear into possibility

To change the taste of sleep

 

 

 

IV.
Use quiet awe

Use your tongue, the strongest muscle
in your body

Use coffee, candy, secret stale cigarettes hidden
in the back of the medicine cabinet

Use the weight of your gaze, the curve of your
spine, the return of your voice

Use all of this as protection from hegemony
& cultural appropriation

Use glitter & guile to disguise your despair

 

 

 

V.
For each deathless beauty
a noble failure

For each lesser enchantment
a graceful détente

For each responsive machine
a choreographed catastrophe

For each psychosexual apocalypse
a disruption contingency

For each tedious evil
a sudden deliverance

Delight & delirium in the rubber room
of every season in hell

Thomas Snarsky

proemial relation #1

here are the upcoming
flowers, burgeoning
forth like the capital
letters that autocorrect
keeps putting at the
beginning of these lines

 

 

 

 

Obliquity

As method. As broken
Bread. As thin line. As
Diatribe. As moment.
Scenario. Nightmare-
Free zone. Sordid wish-
Bone. Mild head throne.
Our bilateral love owns
Too many raincoats.

Joel Chace

stupid ducks

 

even they matter  —

string theory is older now  —

her eyes light the room

 

 

 

 

infinite drop kick  —

so unapologetic  —

just one shop open

 

 

 

 

ceremony riff  —

degree of abandonment  —

miraculous road

 

 

 

 

until our murders  —

eight nickels in his sock drawer–

a calling off off

 

 

 

 

 

unseated, for fun  —

drove to the document dump  —

ninety desks in rows

 

 

 

 

 

mourning was let in  —

first off, she ruined each bow  —

busy with their aunts

 

 

 

 

concentrated arms  —

stupid ducks would not frighten  —

odd way to count them

 

Mark Lamoureux

LACHRYMARY OF THE SORROWS

Went with the jobbers
in mayonnaise, rugged
& welding circuits
for skort cutters. Mercury
Cougar mission
to the H.A.M. radio
meetup. Bellerophon
so what; a bauble
in the maw
of a pewter dragon,
putz is not even a madrigal
smoke bomb assistant.
Missal command of
a hard green fake granny
smith, tiny flakes
of rotten texts suspended
in orange Jell-O cichlid
heirloom. A medicine bag
for punks. Forgotten
space capsule filled
with mulch, terracotta
lachrymary for
hens & chickens, succulent,
easy on the eyes. Rococo
raccoon shaman
in the Shakespeare
garden. That’s for forgetting.
Last time I will buy
a ticket for that guy, snakes
don’t grow on trees.

John Lowther

from 555

The phobic rests before the veil and wonders what’s behind it so as to
continue to ignore what he knows not to have seen, which is
nothing.
The bottom line is that the human species has to realize the human body
is really just a cheap suitcase.
It’s like you’re reaching a critical mass.
The first human who hurled an insult instead of a stone was the founder of
civilization.

If you can’t spot the sucker in your first half hour at the table, then you are
the sucker.

The dispossessed of history are not guided by method but by madness.

Eileen Tabios

THE AWAKENING

[1]
I forgot the mysterious C___ who slipped syphilis to Vincent Van Gogh—she was a refugee from something unknown thus only imaginable by us: a world of people with hacked-off hands, thus, no paintings to criticize or admire…. I forgot how to perceive the shift of stars without feeling them fade or fall…. I forgot how to feel the Milky Way expand simply because, upon my waist, you placed your palm…. I forgot Tiziano Vecelli’s kindness—refusing to discriminate between daughters, he gave the illegitimate Emilia the same dowry of 700 ducats bestowed upon the legitimate Lavinia…. I forgot when one of a love-making couple is blindfolded, one is a lover and the other a canvas, page, smoke …. I forgot the alley of your city where I stood as a statue frozen by unrequited longing…. I forgot Auguste Rodin drawing women while they took their “melancholy pleasure” in front of him…. I forgot Jackson Pollock teaching the harmony of feelings in riot…. I forgot Arthur Rimbaud who said the bears are dancing but what we had wanted to do was move the stars to pity…. I forgot Pierre-Auguste Renoir who loved the girls of Les Halles for letting their breasts sing soprano above their bodices…. I forgot Paul Cezanne painting furniture to escape naked women about whom, he felt, “One has to be on the defensive.”

[2]
I forgot the mysterious C___ who slipped syphilis to Vincent Van Gogh—she was a refugee from something unknown thus only imaginable by us: a world of people with hacked-off hands, thus, no paintings to criticize or admire…. I forgot how to feel the Milky Way expand simply because, upon my waist, you placed your palm…. I forgot the sense of “walking upon a cloud”—the “calm” that overcame William Carlos William upon hearing the minister bestow a benediction: “May the peace of God which passeth all understanding be and abide with you now and forever more. Amen”…. I forgot Auguste Rodin drawing women while they took their “melancholy pleasure” in front of him…. I forgot Jackson Pollock teaching the harmony of feelings in riot…. I forgot romancing the stars to deflect the mundane, even pre-torture rendition…. I forgot Pierre-Auguste Renoir who loved the girls of Les Halles for letting their breasts sing soprano above their bodices…. I forgot Degas’ great joy at glimpsing through an open doorway a beautiful an anguished woman at her bath…. I forgot Dr. Williams fell in love with a young negress lying stripped on a dissecting table.

[3]
I forgot Michelangelo on his back servicing a syphilitic Christian— for euphemism, cite him  instead painting the Sistine Chapel for Pope Julius II…. I forgot Leonardo Da Vinci dissecting criminals who died with hard-ons to demonstrate the penis is not inflated by the retention of wind…. I forgot Tiziano Vecelli’s kindness—refusing to discriminate between daughters, he gave the illegitimate Emilia the same dowry of 700 ducats bestowed upon the legitimate Lavinia…. I forgot Titian’s prowess: he painted nudes with their eyes open to stare back at you as your eyes memorized powdered their flesh…. I forgot the thief (in Li-Young Lee’s favorite haiku) who stopped in the dangerous night to sing to the beauty of the hovering moon…. I forgot romancing the stars to deflect the mundane, even pre-torture rendition…. I forgot Pierre-Auguste Renoir who loved the girls of Les Halles for letting their breasts sing  soprano above their bodices…. I forgot Paul Cezanne painting furniture to escape naked women about whom, he felt, “One has to be on the defensive”…. I forgot Degas’ great joy at glimpsing through an open doorway a beautiful an anguished woman at her bath.

[4]
I forgot Titian’s prowess: he painted nudes with their eyes open to stare back at you as your eyes memorized powdered their flesh…. I forgot the thief (in Li-Young Lee’s favorite haiku) who stopped in the dangerous night to sing to the beauty of the hovering moon…. I forgot Auguste Rodin drawing women while they took their “melancholy pleasure” in front of him…. I forgot mistaking reproductions for what they copy…. I forgot the anguish of knowledge…. I forgot Jackson Pollock teaching the harmony of feelings in riot…. I forgot Arthur Rimbaud who said the bears are dancing but what we had wanted to do was move the stars to pity…. I forgot Paul Cezanne painting furniture to escape naked women about whom, he felt, “One has to be on the defensive”…. I forgot Degas’ great joy at glimpsing through an open doorway a beautiful an anguished woman at her bath.

[5]
I forgot the mysterious C___ who slipped syphilis to Vincent Van Gogh—she was a refugee from something unknown thus only imaginable by us: a world of people with hacked-off hands, thus, no paintings to criticize or admire…. I forgot how to perceive the shift of stars without feeling them fade or fall…. I forgot Michelangelo on his back servicing a syphilitic Christian— for euphemism, cite him instead painting the Sistine Chapel for Pope Julius II…. I forgot how to feel the Milky Way expand simply because, upon my waist, you placed your palm…. I forgot scientists becoming radical to pursue the ecstasy of Truth…. I forgot Tiziano Vecelli’s kindness—refusing to discriminate between daughters, he gave the illegitimate Emilia the same dowry of 700 ducats bestowed upon the legitimate Lavinia…. I forgot when one of a love-making couple is blindfolded, one is a lover and the other a canvas, page, smoke …. I forgot how to perceive with tenderness…. I forgot the alley of your city where I stood as a statue frozen by unrequited longing…. I forgot Auguste Rodin drawing women while they took their “melancholy pleasure” in front of him.

[6]
I forgot Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni possessed incomparable draftsmanship except as regards breasts, though he was weaned by a daughter and wife of stone masons…. I forgot Michelangelo on his back servicing a syphilitic Christian— for euphemism, cite him instead painting the Sistine Chapel for Pope Julius II…. I forgot how to feel the Milky Way expand simply because, upon my waist, you placed your palm…. I forgot Leonardo Da Vinci dissecting criminals who died with hard-ons to demonstrate the penis is not inflated by the retention of wind…. I forgot Titian’s prowess: he painted nudes with their eyes open to stare back at you as your eyes memorized powdered their flesh…. I forgot how to perceive with tenderness…. I forgot the alley of your city where I stood as a statue frozen by unrequited longing…. I forgot the sense of “walking upon a cloud”—the “calm” that overcame William Carlos William upon hearing the minister bestow a benediction: “May the peace of God which passeth all understanding be and abide with you now and forever more. Amen”…. I forgot the anguish of knowledge…. I forgot Jackson Pollock teaching the harmony of feelings in riot…. I forgot Pierre-Auguste Renoir who loved the girls of Les Halles for letting their breasts sing soprano above their bodices.

[7]
I forgot how to perceive the shift of stars without feeling them fade or fall…. I forgot Michelangelo on his back servicing a syphilitic Christian— for euphemism, cite him instead painting the Sistine Chapel for Pope Julius II…. I forgot Leonardo Da Vinci dissecting criminals who died with hard-ons to demonstrate the penis is not inflated by the retention of wind…. I forgot scientists becoming radical to pursue the ecstasy of Truth…. I forgot when one of a love-making couple is blindfolded, one is a lover and the other a canvas, page, smoke …. I forgot the alley of your city where I stood as a statue frozen by unrequited longing…. I forgot the anguish of knowledge…. I forgot romancing the stars to deflect the mundane, even pre-torture rendition…. I forgot Pierre-Auguste Renoir who loved the girls of Les Halles for letting their breasts sing soprano above their bodices…. I forgot—as did everyone else in the universe—the name of Georges Seurat’s mistress: Madeleine Knobloch.

[8]
I forgot how to perceive the shift of stars without feeling them fade or fall…. I forgot Titian’s prowess: he painted nudes with their eyes open to stare back at you as your eyes memorized powdered their flesh…. I forgot when one of a love-making couple is blindfolded, one is a lover and the other a canvas, page, smoke…. I forgot how to perceive with tenderness…. I forgot the sense of “walking upon a cloud”—the “calm” that overcame William Carlos William upon hearing the minister bestow a benediction: “May the peace of God which passeth all understanding be and abide with you now and forever more. Amen”…. I forgot Auguste Rodin drawing women while they took their “melancholy pleasure” in front of him…. I forgot Arthur Rimbaud who said the bears are dancing but what we had wanted to do was move the stars to pity…. I forgot Pierre-Auguste Renoir who loved the girls of Les Halles for letting their breasts sing soprano above their bodices.

Marcia Arrieta

permeable invention

entrance into

lake isle cloud

the mariner’s manual

the moon’s armor




no hesitation

circumstance
the wave

or

the wing
of a monarch





above the rainforest

take the word triumphant
& carve it in a cloud

the chandelier
a comment

hermetic
subterranean blues

Melissa Severin

This is alchemy–
syllables of name, heat and Kevlar, linear time. I know
the sorrowful mysteries need an excuse

to interrupt the sound of 3D printing. Lull fit
for a conversational juggernaut. What’s your ritual?
What’s my ritual?

Auto-tuned longing has been done.
As has eyebrowless portraiture.
Just now I thought all the music stopped but

it’s the lake gone lead. Meaning
we can all leave the house
without mascara. I am careful

with pedestrians—turning the corner is a wilderness.
There are always secrets.
Transmutations.

What type of close do you need today?




Gardening, not architecture

We are dirt and can’t keep long nails clean
when ringing the morning bells.

Soil curved in cuticles maps out of reach places. Bury me
in a forged thing—a mallet to the body skirt. Strike

the belt. I want my lips to bleed out
sound as if the beat could plant a seed

under the sternum—make my heart green
opal splintering with vibration.

Philip Byron Oakes

Can and Can’t

Night’s quorum of stillness.
Ratcheting pensive playing
possum to a draw. Whisper
dancing tandem with the
dark. Rumpling ethereal
quilt making room from
much of nothing. More of
the less said bettering itself
in shadow. Stooping to
console the moment’s fade
to midnight’s blue repose.
Silt of experience lending
weight holding ground to
its promise. The pitch to
its forgery of light lifting
veils. Mining phenomenal
density for depth beneath
the touchy-feely push to
exist.

Jeff Harrison

Blue Throats

kitty the wood
cling the zero top
carnival-smooth reading
neither first is the yawn ,
nor the second, itself a
stretching floating, what’s
slow isn’t plankton after all
but it’s battered until bones blue
and jet’s shade, a night carousel

cunning are
the winks most pushed and loosened
they’d sleep some otherwise
their disease leaves something fresh

Virginia, your donkey-boring head
is thinking elbows again
you should be thinking of
countering my breath with blue throats
why this strange death – all relations
jeweled for the scoring? a gesture imperiled?

whooped the bee defiance flaring…
briefly the jeweler recovers gold
the stick world’s there
stick are her funeral soldiers
paraded before cheated pines

it took some time,
but winged insects have
a new sly unhappiness:
screen, score,
cranium,
noon, & see:
winks

no, not winks under the ceiling, Virginia
below the ceiling are silver bees
it took the jeweler days to make them
road (dark) map affection, could you dare
Virginia’s gauntness?

John Lowther

We need to acknowledge and honor that tension, and the connection that that tension is a part of.
We hope to bring hir here.
We are all brothers under the skin — and I, for one, would be willing to skin humanity to prove it.
We create oppositions and conflicts, and we can transcend them.
We glance from screen to screen.
We have to completely explain the possibility of something new in an old world.
We’re snowed in with only two condoms.
We fought all the time but I nearly put a lily in his hand that night.
We get the world we deserve.


 

Jared Schickling

VACANCY

instead of a preface
what a poem
as weather can do so
why wish it
in the chair
on anyone
why kids will cry so
unnecessarily and
all over
regardless
unnecessary so
who can say
what news can do

1

cutting into steak newsflash my tent is gone
my tent is gone he looks like a cop so
write in the dark my tent is gone
my tent is gone lets smoke out front
local authors my tent is gone so
write butchers’ tales
my tent is gone
in the log cabins sold my tent is gone
tourists from the city my tent is gone
snowbirds my tent is gone
my tent is gone and such

2

was there any depth to it at all rus
kin, so they say, I paid a little for a lot
mouth of the lake like a mirror
where never’s no wind so
when we say
she’s in trouble too much
know
she is three so
me
drawing a line
in sand
for the tent
for consequence so
actually, should have
drawn more of them so
porous
perimeter
it’s rainy
as they say
cheap
in a motel so
my tent is gone
nothing here to prove

3

emotions mixed like primary colors so
live
by enjambment theft
adirondack chair perched
on a motel
after this kid is bathed
her beer and smoke so
racine’s
crayons
in the pines here resemble
in quarter moon crescents from rock
in a painting by day
theater and lake strand
where there is nothing especially so
real in my poems
minus the syllables so
in a wife’s underwear
but the distant ridges
in half moon crescents
not so far away
by kayak, they lie so
but not really
it’s me, see, up here so
looking down there
where they lock up
my pool at night

4

I’m a mid-day mower so
as they say, not nearly mean enough
pamphlet in the making
notebook will
be so
dry
as I am, lake
mist off the mountain
in me, old forge
kid and the one
you don’t name, so behind me
or in the front there so
in their bed
a fishery to our right left
municipal beach to our left right
where my music plays so
crayons
a fawn is trapped there
in the fence, motel terrace so
below me
and smack-dab in the middle of here
my pencil
so
it meant nothing, at all
(don’t I know it)
to the duck so
and her ducklings an osprey
circled

5

earlier so
from this roof—until you’re under
this world spins you
don’t
write it so
a whole lot
of nothing
quick down vacations end so
everywhere
when the alarm goes off
in the ears so
that bug cop
his daughter’s
bites are huge—so up here don’t
we know it

6

itches you wood so
hear of it of course how
these cartoons get lovely
coming in through the screen so
salt in the pines and all the blood
ever been here
your family was prepared so
the girl lasted six days
my tent is gone

Raymond Farr

Another Day Penultimate at Missing the Point

I only slipped on the cake of soap of the air
& drowned in the bathtub of the world
—John Ashbery

I come briefly
Into the sun

Where
I’m writing today

I laugh
I am alone

I write—
Traces of light!

You in the carpeted hall!
As downwind

A radio—
the commissar’s in town, oh, oh—

Reads another crazy
Meaning

Into
The hollow membrane

Of our days
I can’t explain

The cosmos
I grew up in

I renounce all its
Power over me

I feel it
Still swimming

At 4 AM
Like a ghost

Lodged
In my throat

& yet
I exist in utterance

Managed by my
Impotence

Another day penultimate
At missing the point

Eventually

I’ll Simon-says myself
To sleep—

Somebody get me a window
To yell out of—

I mean
Who does that?!

& like a near-sighted girl
Reading lyrics

To her dog
I exist

Just visible
From the nearby

Overpass

Mark Young

Archival Footage:
Koi at play in the water feature of the Secretary of State

As I watch the black woman
Republican secretary of state, I agree
with Zak & the story of
fraternity members who captured
a campus Koi fish — originally from
North Korea’s Pyongyang region, where the
water is said to be volkswagendubbele
cabine secretary of state minnesota table
rental fathers day. This is a story
of back greens & washing
machines, herring, & Koi.

Bank runs & failures were a common feature
of life during the period when Cordell Hull,
the Secretary of State for the US, was instructed
to start classified research into the detection
of enemy submarines under water. Secretary
of State Henry Kissinger denied then & in his
memoirs later that feeding koi at the edge
of the water captured a world & a culture.

In 1815
General Don had requested
of the Secretary of State
for the Colonies
fresh water
on the Rock, with Koi Carp
& a collection of exotic lilies.

Learn all about waterfalls & water
gardens at a lecture, “Beyond Koi: The Ecosystem
of the new secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice.” The
3:30 pm to 7 pm show will feature
musical & dance performances, & arts.

The North American Water Garden
will blend the water feature seamlessly
into the landscape. Borrowed library
items are overdue in the koi’s gut. The
one thing I fervently hope is that they
do not water down the music
of the water buffalo.

Secretary of State Colin Powell,
has said that public diplomacy bacterium
can also cause disease in other
fresh-water and marine fish species. Political
corruption is a corrosive feature of
everyday life & needs to be
“Yeh koi gudde-gudiyon ka khel hai kya?
First you give, then you take away.” Powell
urged Yasser Arafat to cede control of the old
library with its cut stone fountain filled with koi fish.

CHENEY ENERGY TASK FORCE DOCUMENTS
FEATURE MAP OF IRAQI OILFIELDS. There is a koi
pond nearby, teeming with the colorful Japanese fish.

The famous film ‘Koi Mil Gaya’ was largely shot in Uttaranchal.
How does water get from the plant to the people,
& is there a way to improve?

Just when you
think it’s safe to go back in the water, it isn’t. Walls of
water, set in motion by an underwater earthquake. An
undocumented feature? Perhaps. & perhaps not;
I’ll never know. Secretary of State Cathy Cox
said recording machines were disbursed to all.

I haven’t done much work on the house,
but I did finish the koi pond
& how do koi fish reproduce
straw hat decorating with silk virtual malaysia.

This year’s Fest will feature
cultural sharing through
performances of song.

Please use this form
for your comments or
questions to KY Water Watch,
a disease notifiable to the relevant
Secretary of State. The UN will judge
North Koi on its actions, not its words.

(An edited compilation of the output from
the use of “koi,” “secretary of state,” & “water feature”
in Leevi Lehto’s Google Poem Generator
7/16/2005 1:41:45 AM GMT)

Marco Giovenale, translated by Linh Dinh

from They were in Danger

1.

It’s very easy to catch the disease and resistance must be prompt from the first hours of the morning.

It’s not easy to resist. But it is the minimal (or even maximal) degree of the acknowledged remedy. Even if, until now, there has never been in reality an actual remedy.

Once caught, the disease is essentially inside. Irreversible and incurable. The people sit for many hours, close relatives especially, observing and faulting one another without a word about their condition.

Every now and then the sound of an ambulance somewhat far away somewhat near reminds them of where they are, though it’s no longer an innocuous noise as when, in plain clothes, they laughed in their own manner in the familiar world.

They were in danger.

7.

In the evening they went to Veneto street. There, there was a distributor of uranium open day and night, so they became brilliant without knowing it.

10.

Weak, he does not want to be born. He would gladly be born in reverse, towards the dark, shot towards the dark. He would rather be born backward, reversed, with an ample dosage, sleeping, stiff necked, recoiling to not see, dodging the hanging tin pails, ropes on the ground, traps, uncovered buckets, marble, grey rock floors, cylinders that are seating structures and straw, emptying, à rebours, rewind, always giving way towards less, towards black, towards a diminution neither generated nor general but a diminution that belongs to him, a waning of unity, of one only, lacking, letting go, away away, diminishing as stated, subtracted, shortening, once more with less stuff and personality, cough and chill, another cough further away, a pronounced chill, empty room.

11.

Yes, like you told me, I refused to listen to music, because of the dust. On the record, yes. I didn’t even read, not even a letter, for the same reason, just as stated. Stayed in my hiding place the entire time. I tried not to learn anything. Tried to simplify to the utmost my words. At any moment simplicity was even stronger than reality. I thought I was betraying it. It was full of specks. No one could verify what I said. When it was transcribed by the reporters the most celebrated phrase, relative to love, many of them didn’t understand the objective. Even if I simplified everything, at the risk of lying, not everything was clear to them. Nearly nothing, really. Now as I cross entirely into deception, I’m thinking: now it will be clear, explicit. I’ll always lie, completely, without rhetoric. Plainly. Everything will be deciphered. They’ll want it that way. They’ll understand me because it’s also their language. With all the syntax reduced to zero, totally simplified. They understand the lies, the distortions. They’ll read. It will be clear. I was wrong. It didn’t even work like that. It wasn’t working.

 

da Erano in pericolo

1.

È molto facile contrarre la malattia e l’opposizione deve essere pronta fin dalle prime ore del mattino.

Non è molto semplice opporsi. Ma è il livello minimo (e anche massimo) di soluzione nota. Anche se, almeno fino a oggi, in realtà non è quasi mai stata una vera soluzione.

Una volta contratta, la malattia è in buona sostanza interna. Irreversibile e incurabile. Le persone siedono molte ore, specie parenti stretti, osservandosi e incolpandosi a vicenda senza parole del loro stato.

Ogni tanto il rumore di un’ambulanza un po’ lontano un po’ vicino ricorda dove si trovano, e che non è più un suono innocuo come quando, da borghesi, ridevano nel loro modo e mondo consueto.

Erano in pericolo.

7.

La sera andavano in via Veneto. Lì c’era un distributore di uranio aperto giorno e notte, e si diventava brillanti senza saperlo.

10.

È debole, non vuole nascere. Nascerebbe volentieri al contrario, verso il buio, sparato verso il buio. Nascerebbe all’indietro, al rovescio, a belle dosi, dormendo, a torcicollo, retrocedendo per non vedere, schivando i secchi di latta appesi, le funi per terra, le tagliole, le buatte scoperchiate, il marmo, i piani di pietra grigia, i cilindri che sono strutture di sedie e paglia, svuotando, à rebours, rewind, sempre cedendo verso il meno, verso il nero, verso una diminuzione non generata e non generale ma che è una sua diminuzione, un affievolirsi di unità, di uno solo, mancando, perdendo, via via, diminuendo come detto, sottratto, raccorciando, daccapo con meno materiali e personaggi, tosse e freddo, altra tosse più lontana, un freddo forte, sala vuota.

11.

Sì, è come lei dice, mi sono rifiutato di ascoltare la musica, per la polvere. Sul disco, sì. Non ho neanche letto, nessuna lettera, per lo stesso motivo, appena, detto. Sono rimasto nel mio nascondiglio per tutto il tempo. Ho cercato di non imparare niente. Ho cercato di semplificare all’estremo le mie parole. In alcuni momenti la semplicità era perfino più forte della realtà. Pensavo di tradirla. Era pieno di macchie. Nessuno poteva verificare quello che dicevo. Quando fu trascritta dai cronisti la frase più celebre, relativa all’amore, molti non ne compresero l’oggetto. Per quanto semplificassi tutto, a rischio di mentire, non tutto per loro era chiaro. Quasi niente, anzi. Allora passando interamente sul fronte della menzogna pensai: ora sarà evidente, esplicito. Mentirò sempre, completamente, senza retorica. In modo piatto. Sarà decifrata ogni cosa. Intenderanno. Mi capiranno perché è il loro stesso linguaggio. Con tutta la sintassi azzerata, totalmente semplificata. Loro capiscono le bugie, le deformazioni. Leggeranno. Sarà limpido. Sbagliavo. Neanche così funzionò. Non funzionava.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*

First published in

Ekleksographia – wave two, October, 2009 (edited by Anny Ballardini): http://ekleksographia.ahadadabooks.com/ballardini/authors/linh_dinh.html

Later in “Quasi tutti”, Polimata, Rome 2010

 

Diana Magallon

Blind as portrait

For forever an envolving moth,
the best companion,
waking up surrounded by icy crystals
cringing to the sleepless night before forever.

An evolving ape, well said my friend, we’ll said….it’s true, much easier to become a victim inside the cage when there is space for a man and himself and his sacrifice to Mimir’s Well.