The Coroner on the Dead of All Times
Are we mere that we slough? That, as an instance of only, the feel-walls of the skin should sheer so easily on impact– or, calamatized, ruddy into rib-cage among the lilac? Late for a rendez-vous, like this one— rot-dead and un-ing into been, the little deathling . . . so amen-ended and dream-proof, more a caving now than her blondness and hips. Ensouled or un-souled— meat in midst is its own destination, sacro-senseless ever since ever. And before. Earthparts, heartparts—the sleep-pieces of the self morseled into else by ants; away from want and re-want are tugged to darkness. This the lonely began.
Pantoum with a Mirror Inside
Is it I? It is I– I’m anomie, I, mon ami; I saw I was I, I did. Did I? I’m anomie, I, mon ami? Ere he rewrote me we met, or were here. I did, did I? Oh, who was it I saw, oh who ere he rewrote me? We met, or were here– is it I? It is I? Oh, who was it I saw? Oh who? I saw I was I? -after Beckett
Am among. Am mortal whee, botched from the very start, among. Since then am balsa-breathing through. Am passage-process, pulse-pace, proof-pink. My ing-ing—iffy at best. Am all while-ing given to thrall and god-hurry. Am x-ratedness & meat-joy & what’s-his-name when lust’s skully pull un-seems all others in the kite field. The only leggy accident for miles looking good in wool is you. Am romantic deathscepade. Soothe & should. Wanna and coulda fort-da-ing daily. Am why-way, tell-why eyes; shy-say, quell-why sighs. Sinew and brink, am doing the breathing different. Stats so-so and worsting. That sort.
Minor Moans o By dint of where-from where-to whatto-where ourselves out on, from this proudsI view, my engindear, this bloom-slanging (if eye may bonaconfide in language) is faux cuss o is adieux o we phew o we wooooo o
o o o o o o o o o o o o
Wonder wends your bends like a wander wagered over. Twice. Thrice. Viv-lical. Vim-lical. Flash as flash can, my pule, my quash. You'd be harm if you knew how loudly to. Wet-sped confessions. If lazed were a hand.
Who, feeding you orange, is softing what rushes? Why sing the shouldhurries, a sweetharp thing? Such like, whereuponce & so simply, you’d–– when I’d–– when (blushly & bulk by bulk)–– you’d
Of this hand-in-hand we down notsofast & fathom we re-roamember. How nowâ€™s the never wider got. How knowing knowing in fascinations, in nomen-clamour, seeks abandon. We sweet-word mute redeem.
If in this lure & lapse of bluff & of not but in a field on a calendar day if as knot if as rabble if the jinx to my sneeze the bye then to seem & if sigh-lent to sigh if in your -est fetch & petties & wayword if wasnâ€™t just as much as ever in your black dress if for lull & for during if for a peek of reach unoriented if life is & if rarely so that if every anything if underway is underway is elsekiss is sign-done if criss & cross-bent if building on glances is upbrights & downtruths spake _-side & if believed if wined for song (which is blood-summed) and if hurried when all is facets if verge if that too & the tellabout ourloud rapid of mention if beck & stall if in where only if strop if edge if what-all depended from if a simpling sun in all needs if so everyway brimful of found unequally if tasks, the rearranged dirt loop & you loop & you if outluck if lights & nothing so much as a roam if shine for
My More Merely
In this surround, above the downs, are my kind of live. An mmhmm her fever-few-and-far-between. Cherry get, if gotten you be. Otherhow unhindered by the things of me. Things like: junk-hold lungs, bouts with be, the umm-hush & long static of kinda can. Are twenty-six flavors of -elicious & what-if’s head-fuck nagging blood-back for more cream & rush, heave & shush. Dirt-back glares having some pull over the percentages. No tut-tut strut, no lapse in gush. Just holier than wow– an old-fashioned dumb-lovely ah yes! suitable for basking. Sheer towardness, my raredear, I’d sky-write a surrender for. Little red likelihooded that I lust so much.
No Where, Now Here, No We’re
Once you once me, and I (a loan alone, uh-live) finally nerve for a blush and a shove, when in those days of your I overlook the elsewhere, then yes, yes, yes–the god-bothered god-botherer all the butter to eat you with. But will I make for you? And will it take much clutching? Much crutching? If -ive is I’ve and -ize the is of only’s pang, a quiesence crassed, aren’t we all alphabetees in time? Meaning to. Meaning hot too–a blamed span stammering, the stammered stearing between this and that, which is the spade-work of seemultanaity. On our re-rawed knees, at I-level when flopdown determination gets the bust of -ous, when mmm go the torsos, and the vim binges; or, in an unstant, between linen changes, when as a starve of wires shitting itself to tints and spots, between one blah and the next–the extra ache, the old-old awe in the whatever-part come yessing. Or yessing
in full swell, come. Uproarâ€™s the only music toe-wards then. The leap from like. The de-sigh did. The live. The leave. The neither. The oned her, wonned her. The wonder all took place at all.
Then the sea-holly the bodyâ€™s naked fundament its firmament left to let-me let-me care on behalf when wanted least from adepts then the might care to crave such from then but no then the mouth-colored the intendant the song which is inhale when kiss & then recumbency (the many ways itâ€™s done) the endless stake on the balcony with the incurables then the supposes without vanity fuck that fetches the blood down from flounce then gone quiet who am to you underdangerous without attributes unsubstantial right through and without clock like snapped free the sea-holly for some sake of scenery put then anymore there isnâ€™t much to control, which is purpose a
Homage to Bosch
Hell (or is it a heaven?) synopsized in rabbled roundels? These sin-scapes umpteenth & teeming. Vasty with –ous & –ful & –y. So many -moniums mingled, so many nomen of ménage thriving, hims & hers horizon-piled into assortments of gee, of mayhem, of skimp among the fell-sides & brimstone. There the corner-gore havies. There the smalled motlies & rowdies— bird-beaked, vowel-dancing. Nothing, every thing mere. No way to ease among lust’s namesakes. We, like these two, why-wise, genitaled, pointing beyond this frame, confirming the world is a meatery– we ourselves, a sealed-in fact.
The Coroner on Angel Lust
How long can this motion overmind, this haughtful onesome last? One, two, threely forth-and-flaunting for an hour, a day, so up and budging from the body’s heap? Portending what once, and now? Blunt bridge to some her’s or his’s yes? Please of a no that lackens back to earth? All soft-fledge and new must— conquer’s nowise nowhere encore. Useful such an ago ago, who asks instead of urges, give us ables? Rather than the utmost aw-shucks ode-ing O some other ahhh-ward out.
Playa la Misíon Inside remains our last conceit. -Devin Johnston Such erse-riled nohow. But what of the out side that re-mains? Fits, life-sighs, the motion of the -otion? A conceited cope in lack-slipping words? To say it all. To lean. To tell them a part: sea lavender, lime. Eternatural & doeslike– a ripple of mention, perhelps, to those who do knotknow, just not how or why. How, sometimes towerable, meanings sing us, sing throughandthoroughly. Sing of & on, to & for, by & with the roaryboringyellows of up o’clock sharp while the -ers & -ists & -ians mind their menial wheres. Few fly the farbetween, & we on the brink of from–
a grope-thunk largesse: this lavender, that ocean, these limes. Our offguardedness. Our all-egiance. How the five of it will be a love.
So god-bent. So sin tactical. All brutal head-on please bewilder-blissed by untentions. Like overtakelessnessâ€“ a de-light per suasion. The third of three distances (I, you, _ ). Each alike in pulse; a were at the bottom of a say. A you of handedness when loveâ€™s an each-way hope slowing a part to cetera. The distinctions made from say. Belief thigh-higher, demi-done.
I is always already. Second-hand second hand. Thus, gist & makeshift. A therewhere no-wonder. Yet amid such somehow, such oft, we treats this world intermuseumly, which is misunderstandingly right. Or at least like a first-ditch effort at tangle & downroar, at high-hope-wirely a grateful galore of calm beyond all sesames of faith. An ear-share of porquoi. Say-must-to-me blood unblooding the tunnels in the never froufrou aftermath of blew. Dost ya know, my clockwise, my approachable . . . We is thou & thee as much a you, a me. So sigh us.
Mine say mine to say something. Or sleepstow this mention between us. How over yestoyears description dies & gropes are throes are touchlines put to trace as some sweigh-bridge. Sway–the body’s mixplaced satisflictions for which all doing is banquet. The craved of thus as done; the hands of soothes come true. Love this anachronistically yrs tipped to lips as sipped is hail to one’s heat, & means being. Means makes warm sheets ‘twixt which are still wantknots, ah vowels, rives letter-built between which between which we bade un–be knownst!
Thoughts against thoughts in groans grind. And if those thoughts will not well, turning verily to verb as void, & how meat-leased we are, what then? Blood it in? Overstand? O, the beautiful gall of all those gutturals, that empassioned, up-blown voweling on . . . language could be endlessly adequate if we chose, (as the bodyâ€™s here-heap breaks & faith feels silly-sturdy & spite recurs), something to love inexpertly, stalling its so. Stalling it so and so on a sided, reddening this, an oblate, fattened that. And no. Not as summary. Not as balm or glint or heart-cease grace anymore. To those done with disbelieving, as something seemlier. That gala-glory-goneness of it alas-alasâ€“somehow-sanct.
Dear Stammer . . . last form and final thing, the O. -Charles Wright Unfended, I’m one for the heights. A swoonhead of prettyplease going- goinggone hunched. Unpaced anyway mygodding waywardly. In way-words mygoshing the ice-plants, as in–– their red-tipped halts of water grappled the dunes. As in––I oooed and eyed them from behind a shook of red scarf, their little wherebys having it vast in the heart. That mimic-muscle–– the softer said of said, how mattering is up to us. From say to be, & as fears do their suck-a-thumb. Because lungs lost are light, and we tally this makeshift pact with span. How is often is. A dumbshow of aught having a beg: that these are the days that must happen to us: days with the potency of aspect, the tactile O of differences. Of shooks of the clothesline & sheets hardened by breeze, by shivelight, which
suntimes on beds done on lasts better to the whether-sensing hand. Laughternoons. The strange untrieds, & the further of all that’s -wards–– the astral, the black, the tumble-studded
night. The dimming out. The there-there that’s the thou thou.
The Mortician on the Art of Coming to Rest
Now that you have no choiceâ€”eager to go. Now without your meaning motion, your mannersâ€”eager to crude, your body is. But dear meat, do not destine yet too fast from here; stay and be beautiful truance. Let me work this verge, this brink, this thieving now. Let me groom you to a fonder in lieu. Primp you to a look of powdered relief. Of to-fro tenderness. Yes, bilge and stitch. Yes, stipple and staple and sometimes-slice. But also swathed and rouged and pillowed must. This, my plea for seeming. For art. For the going and the gone.
Thanks to the editors of the following journals in which some of these poems first appeared: Cannibal: “Playa la Misíon” Diagram: “Minor Moans” Hotel Amerika: “To Hopkins” and “Homage to Bosch” LIT: “My Merely,” and “Nowhere, Now Here, No We’re” Massachusetts Review: “The Mortician on the Art of Coming to Rest Pleiades: “The Coroner on the Dead of All Times” POOL: “Cellulacra” Shampoo: “Prayer I,” “Prayer II,” “The Mortician on Angel Lust” “My More Merely” first appeared in The Bedside Guide to No Tell Motel, Second Floor, 2007. For their friendship, and their generous attention to the work in this collection as it has evolved, I thank Mark Horosky, Adam Chiles, Barbara Cully, Miriam Benatti, Stephanie Balzer, and for his tireless eye for revision and his advocacy, Boyer Rickel.