Texas Fontanella

From the 4th of August
WhereFlesh

Where Flesh Circulates

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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.