Editors: Ken Harris, Jim Leftwich
Poets: Jeffrey Little, Jake Berry, Gregory Vincent St. Thomasino,
Steve Fried, John Landry, John High, Taz Delaney
"the first letter" #1
--for Lori Lubeski
The child chose this shape despite my own doubts, these reckonings....
For this reason, not the one you expected, we awoke with her sleeping on
my arm in the rain after hearing a mother's voice in the road. There are
those who listen to this music and those who color its sound. Choral
chant, what began a dream unsayable: Cock a doodle doo, my dame has lost
her shoe....The blue-gray of the father's eyes closing as the garbage
trucks arrived by the river. But what does the hair mean? Please do not
say it. Her life will begin here, again. The letters on the table, the
sky burning outside & this image that sends the eyes walking down a
road. The difference is Emphasis. You say child, God says Another, and
St. Francis is whistling to the almond tree--knock upon yourself as upon
a door. An angel was once in this room. His arms aflame yet calm as the
sun we imagine. We spoke of the apple blossom on the edge of a cup of
coffee. I doubted my own sincerity seeing the snows of siberia, hearing
of the loss of our sister.....An animal appears, a rock falls, and
suddenly there is the letter S. The risk is not a loss of meaning, but
the ghosted quest is this journey of a life. What are the red-leaved
trees saying? Where does the wind go? O monk of desire, why have you
abandoned us? We find all of these voices. Peach blossom then & the
mediation of hours. Waking up in the prayer. She was the one who sent
the eyes walking. The child's message was simple enough.
"popsickles & gasoline," #2
--for Nina's birthday memorial, July 26, 1996
There is no measuring with her body. A child...a thread of blue
yarn, the closing door when I left the other country. That which you do
not bring forth will destroy you. What did a city mean, the place I was
going? One, two, buckle my shoe! See this road, my girl lying in the
grass, praying by the gas station, the pigeons on the curb. Some parts
of our life are real. Stirring about the pantry with Peter Pan, cooking
eggs in the frying pan....A photograph of three years, starting
again--the tears behind the taut skin of our wandering sister as the
train hovered in the station. Pat-a-cake, pat-a-cake, baker's man.
Good-bye, sister....In the apartment a bar of soap, a human face, the
water in the monks' jar. Together the child & I will leave here, since
like St. Anthony, we refuse to go it alone. Orpheus on the balcony
beckoning to the fire trucks in the morning. Why, only yesterday at the
prison, I lost my nerve! Or as the poet said, I can resist everything
except temptation. We will become that person. Reading Ecclesiastes & o
dear what can the matter be. A sky populated with migrating pink birds.
Such pinkness! Three, four, shut the door, father....Overlooked in the
sparse leaves I found her naked doll. The child giggling afterwards, our
mothers dancing with the buzz of the wasps. I counted out the change.
For if you can do the same thing in the exact way & time everyday, you
can save the world. O, this later scene of red soil, poppy seed bagels,
the ghost sculpting time with popsickles! Five, six, pick up the
sticks! Eternity's hostage, an act for the sun of our day. Awakening in
a five room garage where all of the furniture says I love you. Good-bye.
Good-bye, sister. This day, more than any other, we love you.
"these quiet children of the rain" #27
As if there were other children in the bush as well. She watched
them float pass in the thickets of wind. A cold moon & the red of it
like too much wine in her father's mouth that night they left the road
forever, began to prance & sing with the faces of the clock in the
shade. One foot up, and the other foot down. Who guards the guards
themselves? The problem, the child wondered, was it not in this turning
to the left when the path, strewn with children, lay directly before
them? See-saw, sacaradown, sacredown....O, the songs of them,
high-pitched & bellowing to the sky. Which is the way to London town?
Very little corresponding reality between what should be & is, she
thought, tearing the root of the tiniest of our flowers. Orpheus naked
not, but no longer alone--for, if the the bread floats, the river
contains the drowned one. A sour scent of acorn, burning leaves, even
the ash of her father's longest finger stroking her brow. Yet I am the
necessary angel of earth. Since, in my sight, you see the earth again--
the poet might have hummed! Still, this river. Me old man laughing in
the rain. The child studied the faces as they pranced into the clearing
under the blood of the moon & in this, too, she appears redeemed.
Gregory Vincent St. Thomasino
that is a vase peering left
& right the nose & chin
of a youth in bloom
is hard won with the uninitiate
a lip veering to
& fro an ear or flexure
there are no metaphysicals
nothing is illusion
that is a vase peering left
& right the noe & chin
of a youth in bloom
that is a lip veering to
& fro an ear or flexure
signing handle held in hand
organ monkey swing vote
only when the seventh isn't the seventh only as the when isn't only.
the seventh is always only, only at the grand guignol.
when the seventh's seventh are is of the seventh & the grand guignol, are.
i remember that i only at those moments i can only those moments,
when i remember. other than that the rain.
but the seventh sevenths only & if at the grand guignol's when.
only at the grand guignol seventh remembers the rain.
january the month my wife numbers pinking. i impulse again
too long for the quarter to hold court. the air, plus.
my wife numbers pinking. two of two, she says, plus pinking.
in a january of no particular year.
the sonic recall of past potions cascades from the fall.
coils, then. the rattlers of higher reasoning from the potions
of past call. mantooth's dish ball rag. foils of. the sonic strike
takes to the roll of past potions morocco perhaps but for the rain.
the secret life
the latest census documents the lack of mystics working in elevator repair
& notes that three out of ten adult males remain convinced that congress
should deputize bob barker in the all out assault against alex trebek.
eliminate the bad beers & what's left - there's your answer. construction
upon the papal roller rink lingers on into the night, klieg lights &
& 1936. i remember nothing of the second grade, just the rubber pylons
remaining upright in the wind. as such i am a statistic, & must be held
to a higher standard - it's easy! - i'll no longer think about the sand
spawning in the flower box or thumbing a lift from the pope mobile. at
this particular pin prick in time - someone - somewhere - is eating a soft
pretzel fully cognizant that no good has ever come from a bright red
phone sitting under a cake dome. america is waiting. the data stream
rides a dogleg to the right, it continues unabated, & comes to a standstill
in the glove box of a '36 ford, wholly reconditioned the milling about
i repeat: circumstance dictates a ferris wheel instead of the merry mixer,
& howsoever you seek to classify it there's still that wait between the
Gift me hot hollows of shook hips
hurl hesitation spit from wild
lips or fist-fucked lift
twist shudder turn no found child
sipped from plackets a shift
smiled limpid wrist of girl
dipped deeper than divers sift
pearl dust where bodies reviled
lift to twist each pip
schist can skirl mild until kissed
masks grace bodies to light their eyeholes
whisk bare personality off faces
keyhole vision's cowerings, choral ask
husks of ancestors solidly sanctify earth places
spyhole-ridden ply hag tasks
pace brain catecholamines to frisk
dipole animal magnets till flask
musk pours through holed aces
masks always follow us, disciples
shallowing suns' disks chased across Halloween
crepe that would be soft as iron
lusts in your infidel eye
sirens while we loosely drape
dust on the drama of a fly
dying in a spider's leap
spyglasses fizzle into rust
lying satiate we would staple
juster causes to caught cries
shape into this fateful frying
whizzing through crust -- why not? -- gizzards
Shivers donate timbre, tremolo to moans.
Breath circles wetly where fingers
roam slow grasps through quivering
baths of moist reward, then deeply linger.
Bone leverage magnifies muscular flickers
tingling to rush against death.
Shines of shadowed nerve flutter
caressed through long-limbed wringers,
shudder as gasps climb home
gush from flesh's stinger at cusp.
When the sun comes on
in a spackled nimbus funk,
and the quail's too hot
to take his rest, but weeps
fire into the writhing script
on his chest,
and the man at the plow
studies the acid vapor that sings
from his daughter's navel
to extract Cain's bleak secret
drop by drop,
Name is a bondage to fear's
mannequin bleating lonely.
Equine deposits till railroad
barters the priest his
heartattack cassock -
a hard-on for perfect clarity
banging his fists
into the steam driver's
Are your fingers so full of fishermen
that you ache for an ear on Gethsemane?
You'll find yourself crucified ass up
while mermaids pretend
a chorus of fine lament.
Lust is a prayer left to rot between worlds.
No denial can restrain their eclipse.
Chac gave the ocelot surrender.
17 colors and a diaphragm in his
back pocket. When Rabbit came
for his head he sent the raven
to gather the media with a
mouthful of serpents he'd
hotwired in Phoenix . The
flashpans and vacuum tubes
froze Rabbit to jade and forever
after he read Venus as a forecast
of war. Ocelot took to the hills
to feast on iguana, to study TV
and the sleep of the world.
for James Broughton
VARIATIONS ON THE BALANCING BALL ACT
or DEATH BY ONE OPIATE OR ANOTHER "I object to being killed in wartime"
1. seven seals sun themselves at low tide
by the cry of one lone loon
2. Military Industrial Complex be damned !
no phoenix rises from this Fire Dance
hovers maybe a paper bird
a thin black ash like Maui snow
that sweet gone cane wing
a small child's kite cut loose
and sucked up toward the sun
3. anything which is inhuman
I do not care for
Reno is dizzied with gambling
Reno is Nero sidewise fiddling with the tactics of men
no revolution in letting burn the compound fracture
of the everywhere cyclomyopian screen
through which all I's are mesmered
4. under the unsealed sun
boredom is one thing not necessary to suffer
yet the fool, my dancecard is filled
with patience, mercy, compassion xx
the invisible chorus of all my other selves
5. come, panacea for a day or 2
if we keep up this way
inebriated by power
we'll be unable to detect
when the rapture comes--
hell, either it's a daily rapture
or it's nuthin', Baby.
6. Vache whispers through my laparoscopic wounds
"Nothing will kill a man for you
like being obliged to represent a country."
song ricochets from breast bone to pelvis
through new secret chambers
singing for the gone felosdese
7. fling that organized hairshirt into the night
pry your operculum open
doomed are those around the ones
who believe it is impractical to dream
I rise from cat naps dizzied by the thusfar
What these ears hear in silent night holy night
is more than skunk along the asphalt
sudden owl in and out of the dark
as if I am not there
bell buoys rocking rolling in the channel at the change of tide
bobbing heads obligingly ringing the hell out of their bells
the click of insects in the pitch black canopy I crawl up into
my window open and I slink down and out and up the tree
or by the dirt road where it turns to lawn the rabbits nibble at in light
a raccoon barrels toward the trash can
nimble in his access to our disgarded stores
or the rats from the woodpile and the feed shed
leap up over the rim of the 55 gallon drum we
burn our garbage in at dusk
the the wind's blowing toward the woods
and not the neighbor's yard caring like others have not cared
for fireflies and sand fleas and horseshoe crabs
a rustling cuff along the moonlit shore
and I among them
this is my watch
while others sleep their peace
and here at dawn one deer
Ancient Fire Brigades
Turgid flint grinds a spark
from seemingly nothing
between two set pelvises.
Then is now now and then
in night coaches secure
when hands fill with
still-warm torches invisible
and sleep that cozy guest.
Girl w/Lotus Blossom
There is an eye
whose seeing the
flight of birds
brings flowers to
in the empty center
the pinhole of vision
happiness and misfortune
II IIIT'S ALL AMAZIN' or A RED LIGHT FLASHES ON YOU IN
It's like a typewriter's Dummy! Some margins fall off the
edge of planting eggs. It is an immutable enigma that sits merrily.
A potato plants seeds in the copy's germinating orgasm - mlorshti -
innotomsha!............ Too much cathode fumes will make you
delusioashockian? Or is it a matter/mind regeneration cloning of
Mr. Geehbetti!? Can a big brain make a Big Bash of a Bang? Can hands
make light? Can the desperate nature of Earth's TV save a galaxy? Or
is me just a floating aspect of a Bern Atom - 666 Meta Syncrons!
I always wanted to fuck my English, teacher. But I cundent frond
the Prong. It's too much dilly-womp in the troubles, my seclusion
emits a center......... or so a cat's mushrooming blit! Would I erase the
Feb 7, 1993
AS LONG AS THE $ LASTS, LETS LOVE OUR WORLD (AND EACH
As long as I was a child (and very obviouslya very stupid and idealistic
viscurillic what's the problem, Juka? What can be the REASON for
Anybody. Unless his name was SaberTooth, eh? And even then, Id havta
wonder. All these
hopeful peoploids lookin' towards the skies and makin' wooopeee, abducteee
For god's sake!!! They be only ten-to-the-ten power tryin' to contain (and
eons past ago, tryin'g to understand) the ABSOLUTE mutherfuckin' concrete
reality of our utter gentile-genetic factual nimbus
MARS CARDS CIRCA THE SIXTIES-MARS INVADES WIT HBIG INSECTS AND SEMI-DEATH
And we know it, for godzsake!'
We as a race o' man (menwomenchildrenscats) Know we're so fuckin' madly (take
very close look, eh! historybaby!) that we is just waitin! Not ror! Not
skies! Not wortin' on God! Not glommin' on Smith! Not hopeJesu'!
WE JUST WANT TO BE! THE MOST OBJECTIVE-ALLEE! THE APEX OF REAL
designate! TED! most swirling stupid greengregarious little SHIT making
(GOD'S semi-retarded gene)... BURN THIS PLANET.... is be.
june 16, 1992
(whatever he says, okay witme)
surface business in black door, dereally ornate floattranquil vowelight,
mansphere, mid-air, the same insiding runpanic few left...
placecrafts...spells. getting dark musicpane verseskew heights but slippery
and low rainvoices, these wordsong, wrung, rangtween secrets &on anon
infactsand writtenhand to the seemeaning of momentsenses described as
entendres. Jump about scened playgroin 'suaded a self to "swallow the