sunday is a metaphor for summer climbing
against a railing made of socks
the scent of sage, a fine mist against my neck, a splinter
in the bushes a cat wrangles, squawking
lemon candies against my tongue melt like
the sound of orange, melodic but campy
Gerald points toward Detroit and I disagree about the socks
they are made of cotton like candy, fluorescent shades
or maybe they were pastel, muted tones of sugar
crystallizing, god damn sugar molecules
clogging my pores
this is not summer
this is a monday and the clash of visual
detail pertains especially
to a kind of counter logic
what remains after rain on the sides of buildings
she said, "hey girl" and I replied, "sexy" and
"anonymous film making might somehow include us all."
the flamboyantly shaded treasure of hope, against all odds
surfaces like a dead body weighted with rocks
I will sing you this lyric with the back of my throat, if you listen
call me ish and I pursue
what will come to include a variation in texture
a predilection for carnivorous limbs, a bout of national
security amplified, and the giraffe
(or was it an elephant) will speak
promising a stratefied logic on film, like a weekend at the movies
what the body cannot like a scent
at the peak violence, or predilection, an influence
or management system
organized in the way that spring flowers grow
on urban plots. some specific, cultivated some
like weeds, leftover from previous owners,
in the ocean
molecules a song geologic history
Ingrid I tell you, voices
resonating like waves
bubbles disperse, survive
as words on rock
pressed against an aging tide, a poem,
letters imprinted on a tree
pacify the rush.
a bluff a sinking
melody across minutes or
this sentiment livid
like heat across August
blood like screams
held back and distant
scattered like beach glass
in cancer memento
a pre-historic era
Ophelia I heard you in the train, your tangles,
your roses lament and screech into and out of the station. Blood of
insufficiency or rain, a misread sigh, curse of detail, anatomy, politics. I
have decided it fits like a metaphor. A glove a leaf a melody. Clarity nuanced
like distant sound from every direction.
“a sharp silver glint of rail”
across exterior vibration limbs cross or break
veering according to narrative inclination,
having left you behind, all this time.
an extrication, layering in timely arrangements of
a girl, in green, a stair case, and a mosaic. I want to cover the light, an echo or planning each new shoot sprouting figure back, backed by lake-scented bubbles, slick shining, awkward ambling like whistles that rewind on the wind. I want to go lolling among fuchsia, dolls on display, doorknob turning over in time. A clue holds fast, a series, donuts or rainbow falter against the shimmer, languid scorn. I want to derive an orange operation, a tale or emotion in a bottle. I want to list each clue like a candle hanging from the end of a sword, sharp and melting.
a siren or a lack of intention, a splatter, like a train wreck or kids on a roll or outside of context, killing, guns don't kill people... like kids or witnesses and a second of noise split there was before; and after, there is only after. you are misguided. an explosion a character formed a limitless series of interrogative statements. publish your dancing comments here. before the trauma repeats itself. but it doesn't repeat it resonates. each emotional fiber reacts unexpectedly in every moment. a turn in the stomach a twitch in the frontal lobe. affects are outward appearances. internal information squelches comprehension like disco pants. dear elvis dear travolta I am sorry for the intrusion. the repeating effects appear as affect and we all perform. a constriction in the throat screaming at the settled newspaper on the lawn a pain in the back of the neck piercing like needles. fragments of detail on repeat. skipped record. broken volume knob. lather. rinse.
is it because we no longer have art that people are forced to have cathartic responses by way of other people's testimony about real things in the world, I ask. but art is real things, about the real, art evokes our responses because we relate. but when three women are held captive and abused for ten years we cannot relate. the (what we call performative) testimony (which to me resembles real, a formally productive articulation of events, a relation between form and content) becomes the aesthetic process and product. tragicomedy. witnesses of the testimony don't know whether to laugh or cry. witness say stupid things because they are ignorant. white witnesses do not relate to black culture and respond like audiences at a minstrel show. have we not come any further than this? we are ignorant about art. we are ignorant about race in america today. we are incapable of acting like humans in response to human pain and emotion. did the man only going about his business expect to set free a woman who had been held captive in the house across the street for ten years? was he supposed to articulate the experience in some other, white america way (minus expression minus narration minus his blackness) so as not to be the subject of ridicule. nothing that he says is funny. but everyone is laughing. his testimony, in content, disturbs. his articulation genuine, and excited in a way that i mean excited to mean emotional but not without words, maybe still with the adrenaline rush that must come with running across the street to break down a door and rescue a victim of abuse and then running back across the street to call the police. i was just eating my mcdonald's he explains and then the screaming started... who wouldn't be "excited" and how long would that "rush" take to dissipate. i feel sorry for myself and for people when we react like ignorant idiots to traumatic events. is there no compassion for these women, no respect for this man who broke in the door not knowing who else might be in there with a gun or a knife or some other potential violent situation. can we not act as people who understand that we live in a world of violence but also in a world of many people who talk and believe and sound and express and walk and exist differently. is it really possible to live in this world of continuous diversification and ignore the textures of expression, culture, language, personality, color, emotion, understanding. still we continue to abuse each other even when some instances of abuse are agreed to be illegal or unacceptable. we find excuse for abuse when we can call it something else instead. we feign ignorance when we should act better. we reelect politicians we can't trust, we blame the vulnerable for our own shortcomings, we give money to the entities that oppress and control us. we hate ourselves and so we hate each other. we know there's really no such thing as freedom or security, that cameras that catch criminals also may one day catch us or our sisters or our parents. we believe we love our country but our country is killing us. it is killing the least of us and the best of us and we know, somewhere we do know, that there's not actually a distinction between these. there is no least or best or other, but there is only how we all suffer the consequences.
writes poetry and creative nonfiction and some other kinds of fiction and whatnot...she has a ph.d. in 20th century American literature and spends a lot of time teaching and playing with her dog Tasha...