from Percival Everett in “The Art of Fiction No. 235”

Everett: “I remember loving Lewis Carroll from an early age, and not just “Through the Looking-Glass” and “Alice” but the syllogisms and a book on logic. And then I remember quite well, early on, reading something I thought I shouldn’t be reading, Maugham’s “Of Human Bondage”, which I got from my father’s shelf. I think I was nine. It was fun because I didn’t think I was supposed to read it. As I look back, I think that it’s reading, probably even more than writing, that I find important. Reading is subversive because you necessarily do it by yourself. Which is why books scare people like Donald Trump. What’s interesting to me is that the poor people who identify with Donald Trump, they think of themselves as unlucky rich people. If things had just gone differently, they would be rich, too. The system has worked against them. It’s the same reason people play the lottery. Overnight you could wake up rich, and that’s an exciting thing. What you can’t do overnight is become educated. That requires a lot of work, so that’s not a goal. It’s something to fear. But that’s exactly why I find books so important. I don’t care what people read. If they read anything, then they might read something else. I just want to participate in making a different culture. I’m thinking of that line of Walt Whitman’s—”Produce great Persons, the rest follows.” It sounds flip when you just say it, but it’s true. That’s not to say that people are bad, but I want a readership that wants to read things because the work is difficult, not because it’s only fun. I want the fun to be in figuring it out. That’s what reading is all about, and to me writing is really just an extension of reading. But there, enough of my soapbox.”

Read the entire interview in The Paris Review.

Pronoun Disaster (Saints That Maketh Their Grave)

Wikipedia Poem, No. 476

W476

“Bless the fever in that night / in the sixth month of my life. / Bless the fever, for it gave me sight; / it swole my brain to fit God’s gift.” Tyehimba Jess

he she                

his   saints
                  maketh are
the grave that maketh       are their themself

you he she    
his letter saints her letter saints
    and to them
they themself 

they make him self your saints 
her saints that marketh their grave
       theirs
the lord that killeth and     maketh the lord killeth
and maketh again 

the lord killeth 
and they to me the grave and bolt 
him he she                            ours his saints
           maketh and marketh 

maketh and make the
      she      who ours           his
saints and to themself you she he it they
    the lord killeth up on the         lord killeth 

maketh up she
                  he they their we us our saints 
and among them

Saffron Saffron

Wikipedia Poem, No. 454

saffron-sm

ONE drawn on saffron scarves
   drawn and chanted        hail lord ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l 
lord ram!l lord ram!l lord     ram!l lord ram!l    lord ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l 
lord ram!l        lord ram!l   lord         ram!l lord ram!l lord         ram!l lord 
ram!l lord ram!l lord        ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l lord   ram!l 
lord ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l lord ram!l lord   ram!l lord 
ram!rawn and chanted     hail lord ram!l lord         ram!l       lord         ram!l 
lord ram!l lord ram!l lor  

TWO         shops          that have since           been shut and them identify 
thousands of muslim-run butchers'     shops them identify thousands of muslim-run 
butchers' shops     the street youths           talking officers to hindu girls 
informers police officials say helping to stop       muslim-run butchers' shops that 
have since been shut and urging officials say helping them identify thousands of 
muslim-run    butchers' shops the streetice officers to stop muslim-run     
butchers' shops the streetto stop muslim-run           butchers' shops that have 
since   been        shut and urging officers to stop muslim youths talking          
to hindu girls in them 

THREE      the dominance of india's main religion which he felt was being eroded       
by yogi adityanath a       priest and politia         set up in       zero zero zero 
zero        by yogi adityanath a private militia set up in zero zero zero zero  by 
minority faithscian to assert the     dominance of india's main religion which he 
felt        was being eroded by minority faithstion which he felt was being eroded 
by minority faithsician to assert the hindu yuva vahini    (hindu yuva vahini (hindu 
yuva    vahini (hindu yuva vahini (hindu yuva vahini (hindu       yuva vahini (hindu 
yuva vahini (hindu yuva      vahini (hindu yuva vahini (hindu         yuva         
vahini (hindu youth force 

FOUR        to zero zero zero  million       last month to chief minister of uttar 
pradesh home to chief minister of uttar pradesh home to chief           minister of 
uttar pradesh home to chief minister        of uttar    pradesh    home emboldened 
openly proclaiming its    hindu roots and putting its       hindu roots and putting 
pressure on policeter of uttar pradesh home emboldened openly promotion people of 
uttar pradesh    home to zero zero zero         million last month to           
chief minister of uttar pradesh home emboldened openly promotion people of uttar 
pradesh     home emboldened openly proclaiming      its hindu roots and putting its 
hindu roots and putting i 

FIVE       country's secular statusd known for       his fiery      anti-muslim 
rhetoric and   a campaign against love jihad — or the country's secular statususs 
the conversion of hindu women to islam — has          shocked some indians who say 
it undermines the conversion         of      hindu        women to islam — has 
shocked      some indians who say it undermines the country's secular statusnversion 
of hindu women to islam — has shocked some indians who say       it undermines the       
country's secular statusn to islam — has shocked some indians       who say it 
undermines the conversion of hindu women to islam     —      has shocked 

SIX    that have erupted sporadical      hindu-first policies with the potential       
to stoke communal to stoke communal to stoke       communal to   stoke communal     
to stoke communal tensions that     have erupted sporadically through india's zero 
zero -year history india's zero zero -year        historyhrough india's    zero zero 
-year historyicies with the potential to stoke communal to stoke communal to stoke 
communal to stoke communal to stoke communal to          stoke communal tensions       
that have erupted sporadical hindu-first policies with the potential to stoke 
communal tensions that      have erupted sporadical hindu-first policies with the          
periodic decline

paculum-spec2-sm

Source: Jain, Rupam. “Hardline Hindu Youth Call The Shots On Streets Of Uttar Pradesh”. Reuters India. N.p., 2017. Web. 22 Apr. 2017.

Dear Poets

amelia-sm

.

FORM I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FORM
FORM I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FORM
FORM I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FORM

FORM I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FORM
FORM I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FORM
FORM I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FORM
FORM I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FORM

..

FIELD I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIELD
FIELD I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIELD
FIELD I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIELD

FIELD I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIELD
FIELD I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIELD
FIELD I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIELD
FIELD I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIELD

FIGURE I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIGURE
FIGURE I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIGURE
FIGURE I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIGURE

FIGURE I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIGURE
FIGURE I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIGURE
FIGURE I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIGURE
FIGURE I don’t want to tell you how to do your job
I don’t want to tell you how to do your job FIGURE

Overwatch Widow-Enabled Ableton Overton Windowlicker

Wikipedia Poem, No. 421

cab

“of the demon: ¡demonio! Sumother-tongued / lengua::lingua palaver::palabra muele::muela-like / a sharpened tooth grinds as grounded / so they who can can saw::see::saw past-to-present / perfect // tense” elena minor

slow nintendo eyes hallucinate on the tree tops 
    of war & other manly fears 

fighting basslines back from the castle bulwark 
    the soldier barks playing his 

muse like a hard bleak nest expelling  
    supernatural darkness 

ruins spring up in the suicide forest 
    nestle his falsetto starving 

else blue eyed moneymonkey plays pieces of influence—the man 

that sings off what-will-people-think or 	
    in the pleading

burn hysterical naked singtrade 
    like unwanted pregnancies for strips 

darker thin apocalypse plays the big streams of plastic 
    keep-your-shame 

outside super nintendo 
plays on a drunk’s tokyo 
falsetto harmonydreams 
with much darker musings playfully 
playful play y chill futuristic and tracked 
into oblivion people golden salted with time

Belted Kingfisher

belted08-sm

By substituting X for their name
We begin to blue-grey a flicker rate
Between eyes, nose, ears and mouth.

The subject doing the describing,
For instance, receives big panicked gulps
And must not be allowed to employ simile
Without supervision—

How liberating!

Now, let’s consider X a revolutionary—
Stephen Dunn once wrote as much
While withering for cash.

If X died today, the sun and the moon
Would finally receive their answer:
A torn sheet of paper
for both celestial bodies:

Grim, graceful and surreal;
A canyon of sugar skulls,
Oh! the lightcycle enfolding forever
Like endless dough.

X insists
They need not be
Consistent.

X’s interdisciplinary epigram, anyway,
Inspired (which?) Dickman’s monograph 52 years on,
The latter being more studied yet
Significantly less erudite
Than the former, who cannot
Will not make up their mind
But will resolve to vacillate endlessly.

Do be you
Consumer
Of Coke.

X is one of the park’s rarest
And least conspicuous trees.

Found only on dry ledges of the summit,
X is little more than a shrub.

X is not a belted kingfisher
Despite their harsh and rattling call.

X is silly and not as
Handsome as you remember.

When Christ arrives,
X is surprised.

Reminder

wiki395-01

 

I’ve woken up long ago. The plane scurries silently overhead, is full of people, of consequence. It is gone in 3 seconds. Passed through the window shade into nowhere. In France and Germany purple contains more red and less blue. A cat of ash I watch intently. As he, too, in silence, trots into the backyard. Does he live in the shed? What do I know? He disperses behind the shed, out of nothing. Is this music too loud? I’m done with questions, it is fine. I used to wonder why John Ashbery bothers with collage, but it’s no longer a concern of mine. I’m older now and I understand. A man is not only a beautyberry or only a painter or only a gondola. He can live anywhere at any time and my body is the mug of coffee that carries me here. If I obscure this mess, watch what it becomes! A pile of ciphers. (A muscular word that I need to be reminded of occasionally. One should be grateful when one is reminded of that word: Cipher. Thank the man and the place who reminds one of it: Matt Taibbi, last night, at the party.) A pile of ciphers like a lover’s alarm clock and reportage, hot and sweet. A pillow for sleeping then. Watch how the ciphers redden and collapse into one another as the temperature rises. The air desaturates. Lungs no longer new, suddenly, nude. I suppose I am a journalist first, and recoil. My socks do not match. Your socks, meanwhile, in mid-flight. Everything purple is discarded on the bedroom floor, gathering little flakes of us. My eyes today are gray, thank you for asking.

Wikipedia Poem, No. 350

wiki350-sm

“Among things with souls, find me. / Picking thru the alphabet / or leaning out the window. … / Murderers humming under the window.” Amiri Baraka

here, the reality of madness
here, the madness of reality

wadnt to ss to sho sho shou madness
 i of madneality yo ss re readnesho shof of madnealit t t the readness
i wantyityou thesss wadnt 
re reantyityou 
tyityou the madne reality of of realityou tyi w yi 
wantyityou the realityou ty re readnt resshou showanesho sho ss
i thowant wanthe madne madnesss
i wali

     no 
i give it as reality 
and has ever 
existed and 
  safety 
is 
    to 
us 
are 
plural reality is to person us are places 
       in the mad we 
    speak 
of madness we speak of 
       a schizophrenic maybe 
each 
    human being 
about 
    a touch of 
madness 
in to 
the 
         freely 
         that about 
       a touch of 
thought 
        heading for then is not but 
shouldn't we speak 
    of realities and 
        if 
those who understand that if the 
world differently places in you 
a finding you may 
     be 
love 

but there in great mingle 
freely madness and safety than 
  other are places 
in 
my madness maybe each 
          human being understood for her 
human being understood

Wikipedia Poem, No. 329

wiki329-sm

“…there are too many supermarkets, with too many cashiers.” Mark Halliday

          passion passion passion passion passion 
      passion 
          passion 
latin a hostile sense
passion passion 
      passion passion passion passion passion passion passion passion passion passion 
    passion passion 
passion 
        passion 
passion passion passion 
passion passion passion passion passion passion 
      passion passion passion passion 
   passion passion passion passion passion passion 
passion passion passion passion 
passion 
         passion passion 
passion passion 
passion 
passion passion passion passion passion 
anti breathes anemos 
  passing passion passion passion passion 
passion passion passion 
passion passion

Wikipedia Poem, No. 312

wiki312

   appeal appeal 
      appeal 
        appeal accounts 
        infrastructure why 
       does 
      oedipus go to 
         freytag’s 
pyramid 
what 
        is 
          famous for what innovation according 
        to the 
          most important 
      aspect of thebes 
is a good plot structure the most important 
      aspect of 
     thebes 
     among 
other things sophocles is in a 
   good plot structure why does oedipus go 
    to thebes in 
      a 
good plot structure why 
     does oedipus go to 
freytag’s pyramid 
what 
innovation 
concerning
         whose account 
    of 
       the 
mytho- 
historical aspects 
of 
        the 
most important aspect 
of thebes 
      among 
  other things sophocles is thebes in a good plot structure 
      why 
   does 
        oedipus 
          go at all