Daedalus (Black Remix)

Wikipedia Poem, No. 579


“That one most perilous and long voyage ended, only begins a second; and a second ended, only begins a third, and so on, for ever and for aye. Such is the endlessness, yea, the intolerableness of all earthly effort.” Melville

for language
symbolic this
mothers’ death
was a life
he bestows on her—her surrounded now—
his mothers
the composition for a life
bestown on her—his mothers—only through language
symbols like black water then anorexia
or an anorexia of rage
like black
water to jung a presence in which
exorcise a substitution
he bestows on the
peculiar life particularity
if only through language
like teapots of a purpose for a life particular

and elegy

elegy if only matter
the composition an anorexia of performance
more like black water than to call this mothers’
composition a purpose
for language
symbols like
slow black water

royal rise roil roll raze raise

Family Happiness (Nondidactic)

Wikipedia Poem, No. 572


“Overture of my voice like the flash of bats. / The hyena babble and apish libretto. // Piscine skin, unblinking eyes. / Sideshow invites foreigner with animal hide.” from Cathy Park Hong’s ‘Zoo’

they move today as was written   hold that sound
against one of

they move   today   dog hyper-aware   and read by complex formations
me she or   has gone

they   move today   perspicuous improvisational solo
explain more clearly   

they move   today it is being written   
hold it against one's   patience

they   move   today   for difference radiates 
one of us   curious dog

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.

Trinity (Nuclear Test)

Wikipedia Poem, No. 507


“I wake up from sleep. And I fall asleep again! / From serving an era. To betraying a different era. I recite. / I will keep paying 150 yen to buy your smiling face.” Terayama Shūji

          but only therapists remain   
and projected to have         
no metaphors i am thinking 
the impossibly           large brick school building 
the phone call   and days ago 
holding             no         metaphors        
i am thinking about      what i asked her  
in first grade        the therapist holds 
the fragile invulnerable dictionary 
spasms   outside      the hand and apologizing 
about       the boy          i was 
how my motherapist      and days ago         
     holding spasms         
outside this        thinking exercise      writing about   
the fragile invulnerable world 
about     the boy                     
the impossibly large therapist 
projected toward me

Therapy (Pulling Red Thread)

Wikipedia Poem, No. 483


   dazzle in bayonne
them i 
spot the battleship a 
   thing in me 
      better in college 

diminutive bayon

i am a 
human who 
     sits unlike a trough 
purchased long at 
      academic front leaking

a long narrow open container 
for animals 
to eat or drink 
out of


rarely painted red

Personal Poem


“I weep for all of these or laugh.” Ted Berrigan

i meant to say something about light
i raze light not your light and
not artificial light    what of the artificial then?
an ungainly freudian monolith
gargantuan simple fleshy    constructed
of shit found in the tv street    about light

input output welding welded expository writing    damaged categoricals
empathy    but     there's always a corollary-but with men
who lick their long waisted fingers    clean of light
let's not talk of chivalry or boyhood    manhood    let's don't mention
one's compensation for time lost
    while mistakenly incarcerated
me daffodil lazy under laundered blanket   you baseless and imaginary

i meant to say something to you about lightness in chaos
clutter razes light not your lightness   aloof
a poof    proof of what makes one    the fleet-footed slave of truth
i meant to say something outloud    but i sank into the ocean    to you
with the rowers and singing maidens and maidenchasers
and the mist which unnoticed        by anyone not me    unmoored
    flares eternal
guides the way home

Source: Berrigan, Ted. “Words for Love.” An Anthology of New York Poets, edited by Ron Padgett and David Shapiro. Random House, New York, 1970, p. 61.

Gender Politics

Wikipedia Poem, No. 472


“If I were in authority, I would forbid advertising.” Le Corbusier

to be loved   eyes closed of pain  
it is just like you not like you nothing flat  
traced with a number two pencil    nothing vested 
in hydrangeas something more like cutting 
something black ravage    to be
loved    afraid of course cutting
a slow-covered kitchen knife    something more
we will be loved afraid of pain
its dimensions feed from perspective
to follow up     thick unguent

you don't like   specifics
        we will make more     we're flattered
      thick unguent                    carving
    that you don't         like in fact we will make more
          we   will          thick unguent            
carving into mountains      just        like you
     that     you don't like 
nothing flattered kitchen knife something
    vested in hydrangeas something          something
            that you don't like        specifically that we loved
         once         afraid of pain                  covered
    in kitchen knife something
    what you    don't like    nothing black ravage
    wielding    to be loved afraid of pain    it is ok
that you don't like you
nothing    cutting    velvet    safe

Rabbi Said

Wikipedia Poem, No. 465


“Sweet Love of youth, forgive, if I forget thee, / While the world’s tide is bearing me along; / Other desires and other hopes beset me, / Hopes which obscure, but cannot do thee wrong!” Emily Brontë

there's no time to   explain there's no           
dazzle in          order to wrestle among its   
ants ants ants ants ants ants ants ants ants      
to say       not           better in the christian sense 
the jain sits under a tree in        order to wrestle 
among its    ants ants ants     
crawl          up his perfect warmth even if           
i feel no such warmth       for the gourmand           
for the essentialist        for the part of me which insists upon 
treating others with          respect 
as productive as an ant productive

         this is    the         earth's horizon — 
handsy        in control       touchy-feely frightening 
the jain     it is being in its essential parthood
i insist upon treating others with respect
as productive as          a thing being   only eyes   the thing
even if i or it feel no such warmth           for this eye 
i         feel no such      warmth   for the same     tree 
or ant in order to wrestle among
among      its ants ants ants ants