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Rรถntgen Equivalent in Man

a journal of experimental writing

Volume 2 July 2011

Auckland | Aotearoa

GEIGER COUNTER EDITOR Orchid Tierney SUB-EDITORS Damian Ward Hey Bonnie Coad PHOTOGRAPHERS José Alberto De Hoyos (pages 12-3, 37, 55, 67, 85, 89, 94-5) Anna T. McLeod (pages 24-5, 48-9, 58-9) COVER ART Farhad Nabipour Front: Going to Work, 76x76 cm, oil on canvas, 2010 Rear: Make It Sweet, oil on canvas, 2010 WEBSITE EMAIL

© Rem Magazine July 2011 All rights to the works printed herein revert to the author or artist upon publication. No individual works may be reproduced without the written permission from the author or artist. online edition

ISSN: 1179-8696 SUBMISSIONS Rem Magazine welcomes submissions of poetry, fiction, essays, reviews and art. For a full list of guidelines, please visit the website.



ATOM [CONTENTS] features

castle romeo [editorial] the notion of ‘being’ in a contemporary cityscape 6 fusion [one on one poet series] john m. bennett 30 fission [art talk] melissa fergusson & the charlatan clinic 52 isotopes [contributor bios] 90

contributors Arita, Jun don’t stop 7 Besemer, Jen word weave (white sands) 68 word weave (dugout incubator) 69 Bensko, Tantra birdlings 70 Bett, Stephen bill frisell 12 lionel loueke 13 bobo stenson 14 Britton, Iain high-wire intensities 8 wrecking ball pendulum 10 Bucklow, John IMMQRTAL 64 Canlas, Noel small stone 50 Carter, Laura slate 60 song in v 61 space 62 de Souza, Diego Gedoz cruel bloom 84 Drew, Allan making ends meet 18 haikupoemization series 20 Farr, Raymond in one sense he is a cone 74 Garni, Ricky midnight snack 48 4


ATOM [CONTENTS] Gaze, Tim untitled 16 untitled 17 Godamunne, Nadeesha lovers 78 maximus 79 Kayss, Sarah Katharina depressed subcore 22 Kelly, Anna i take a break from teaching to read majorie perloff 49 Keen, Raymond how does on redeem the act of defecation? 86 attempting to “speak in tongues� at quarter-speed 87 Hunter, D. Thomas the day they took my dad away 56 McKim, George up there 24 Mitchell-Lumsden, J.D. listen my children and you 58 do not take a protector 59 Nelson, Rodney demain matin 63 Newrick, Tiffany Rewa untitled alley 1 26 untitled footbridge 1 27 untitled (a conversation with the body) 28 untitled (in situ study) 28 untitled (still) 29 Pravda, Joseph the late eve-ning of adam 80 Rapatahana, Vaughan spinning out of control 38 environmental troika 40 Robertson, Justin the metal whale 73 Strang Barbara unnamed 21 Taylor, Andrew no hand paper down toilet 25 Wilson, Alexa starting point 42 REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)



the notion of ‘being’ in a contemporary cityscape

I packed everything - artworks, books, clothes, puzzle magazines, sheets, plants - into my Toyota Corolla and I drove as fast as possible out of Dunedin. Took the highway along the rich east coast of Aotearoa, over Cook Strait and through the volcanic lands of The Fish of Maui. I couldn’t see out of the rear window but who cares, right? That’s how I roll. Because I was gone. Because I wanted the bigger lights, the bigger bridges, the freedom to adventure in a bigger city. Man, I was heading to Auckland, Tāmaki Makaurau because that’s where I was gonna make it happen! Pseudo-celebrity dreams amongst the shitty ghettoesque, leaky houses. Only, I quickly learned that the idea of the city outweighs its corporeal reality. Auckland isn’t a flash hub of cultural significance and it never acknowledges itself as a city. Inhabitants are more happy to align themselves with their suburban placements. Grey Lynn. Titirangi. Birkdale. No one wants to be a JAFA. They’re apologetic. “Nah mate, I live in Waitakere, not Auckland!’ Now that Auckland has absorbed the satellite cities, that statement is no longer true. Even as a native Southlander, I share their embarrassment. I don’t know why the locals feel this way. The city is a constructed space where our subjective realities congeal and dissolve but no one has ownership over another person’s lived experience. When people ask me what it is like to live in Auckland, I am truthful when I say, ‘I don’t know’. I have citizenship only when I engage with the people who inhabit the space from Albany to Papakura. Each interaction cements - if only for a moment - a synapse which allows the exchange of emotional property. Communication builds cities. And tears them down. It is a painful and unrelenting process. Every time you flag a taxi or a Trenchcoat approaches you on K Road, begging breathlessly, ‘I’ve-ran-out-of-petrol-on-themotorway-lost-my-credit-card-do-you-have-any-change’ (and I gave the con 60 dollars - dumb fuck that I am) we become city builders. Language (in all it’s forms and mediums) is a hand drawn line, connecting dots to dots to dots. That’s the holy grail I was looking for when I left Dunedin eight years ago. A city-sized puzzle - similar to what you would find on a Pizza Hut placemat. Best,

Orchid Tierney 6


JUN ARITA don’t stop

acrylic on canvas



IAIN BRITTON high-wire intensities

with investigative curiosity I go on hunts choose anything vulnerable ask for no names / no places of origin / ebony or ivory types no personal indicators I invent my own strategies on how to kill a story # she has little to say about my botched attempt to force her to the top of a hill plaster her body all over the grass blister her ideals of conjugal hibernation she says little about play-acting the uninhabited virgin the prongs of a rainbow grabbing at the figure of her solitariness # the sun peels back its collar of leaves exposes its throat to the moon’s cold eye parable-talk is the smooth hardness of a stone 8


IAIN BRITTON breaking the mucus of a lake /

/ the woman’s whiteness

reflecting upwards the synthesis of a fathering pulse a walkabout the humbling stealth of a watery evening # nocturnal watchers snuffle through Bible bins chewing off aphorisms /

/ pulping

sweet boluses for the gratification of her mouth she hates


the intensities of attention-seekers the loss of another breathing space through recklessness – a journey too far # I choose the birds high-wiring through branches morning becomes electric self-archived /

they share fame briefly




wrecking-ball pendulum 1 about all there is to remember … the reverberations of one demolition site after another a wrecking-ball pendulum power packed and all the president’s men couldn’t put the egg together again

all the beasts of the field couldn’t gather the pieces that had cracked so easily couldn’t conjure up replacements like mountains on a roll a clock

communities digging in

mouthing instructions

crunching numbers

every hour


here children go to bed

dipping the sun in its oil

cherubic wonders dreaming of khaki colours for people 10



who occupy condemned

honeymoon houses for the poor

3 the demolition squad closes in on hotels which float

which seldom break up

egg timers spill futures down the narrowest of necks beach impressions run wild waves

scoop fissures amongst sunbathers

and all the president’s men

have been put on high alert they stand


like skittles

for the sky to explode



STEPHEN BETT bill frisell

Don’t know anyone who can play chords like you —so dangerously alive (In the moment’s edge Otherwise, voracious explorer Top drawer And top draw-er, too, at the local Jazz Festival When dreaming the blues how could anyone do better? (Truly picking raw steel off the soul, sir



STEPHEN BETT lionel loueke

Another from West Africa to West, laidback vibe nylon-string (warm) guitar, voice, & very foreign (cool) language Already a Grammy winner under mentor Herbie Hancock Will the real African Paul Simon pls stand up? (stand near Ali Farka Toure in Timbuktu) (might as well throw in Ry Cooder too) Unique string striking —off the cuff of a rich textured African robe



STEPHEN BETT bobo stenson

The cliché is true in this case. A new recording by Bobo Stenson is an event. Since 1979, he has made only six albums as a leader for ECM. They constitute one of the important piano trios canons in modern jazz. Thomas Conrad (Nov., ’08) Manno manno, the most gorgeous contemporary jazz is, like, happening from disparate & often dark solitudes: Norway & Israel OK, so this Nordic pianist is Swedish (a technicality?) but the “gorgeous” still stands Probing & melodic Poised & delicate Austere, poignant, ascendant— words critics use to approximate this music As in… such ascendancy it is as if his right hand finds a way to keep climbing even when the keyboard ends* This keyboard that does end restrained in its certain beauty beautiful in its restrained certainty 14


STEPHEN BETT These Nordic jazzer guys… Remember the golden rule that goes Miles— Don’t overplay (let silence have its say


*Ditto epigraph 15

TIM GAZE untitled

black acrylic paint on paper (decalcomanias), 2011



TIM GAZE untitled

black acrylic paint on paper (decalcomanias), 2011



ALLAN DREW making ends meet

TO: Marrianne Hodges RE: Making ends meet 7:32pm


o heer we are, end of naother day spent trying to make ends meet. Actually, past the end, cos its after 7pm. Or instaed maybe not even at the begining, trying to get a head on tomorow but also catch up on a day that started ealier in the week. Among other htings, I’m behind on thees exercises for this on-line typing tuter my division managers making me do. Enhancing my typing skills is a supplementary addendum to my goals and objectives document for end-of-year review which cascades into my annual performance-based remuneration adjustment. Anyway the exersice is that I have to white this entire email without looking at the keyboard and without corecting any mistakes. So I gues what youll read is either unrevised and natural nd straight from my mind or heart or slpeen or else so well practiced that it takes no brain to rite it at all and my fingers move by themsevels. One of hte two. You can tell straight way I’m getting stuff wrong, because I wrote heer instead of here. So I said to C that I hadnt seen you for awhile and then she said that you ewre in this morning and then I remember I said somethin to you, about the documentation for your billable hours spent on the process improvement project aimed at implementing new technology to more efficiently reconcile our accountabilities and minimise incongruities. That was adfter I had been talking to Stan, stan is a pretty good guy when you get him in the pub, but he’s a bit hard t take at work—sstrange to be so different in different bit sof your life. How do yu know who to be where? Anyway Stanhad provided me with constructive feedforward about key features of my presentation conducted using Microsoft Office Live Meeting bringing together people from six disperse geographies, althogh quite a few didn’t turn up. Andhey the computer corrected a tyop. The machines are petty clever. How can it know I make a mistak when I don’t even know whats happened? And so yep I have seen you even tody but, should I worry that I spoke to you but didnt remember? Maybe it was just I sad noting, I mean sad nothing, I mean said nothing worth remembering. Most likely. in case you’re into tmorrow and I don’t see you, I’d like to take this chance to say hellp. Help and hello if you can tmorrow, we can do both at the same time, each one is the sane. If not, then might try t catch you on day for a coffee or somethin with C if theres time to grab a moment. Hard to know when I’ll b free, I’m spending substantial business hours brainstorming the root causes of discrepancies between the zone in which the business is performing and the forward-looking targets laid 18



out in the multigenerational product plan, which means i don’t ahve time in my time. To do towards whta I want makes it hard. That meant to sya, now I write this carefully, it should b easy for us to meet, so I never force it, but it nevr is, so it never happens. This is getting sulli. Silly. I try my beast to say something at least as correct as I can, and still here s how it come sout. Sout. This is me new word. It means that what I want to write and what I actuallly write never line up together. O else they line up so parallel theyre apart for infinity. Maybe its geographyical, us being at different ends of the far extremes of this openplan office. There’s no regular and recurring business requirement for liaison. and Now I will be very careful bcause the email is has to end, because I have to prepare for my monthly conference call to clarify the reasons for and challenges associated with this month’s financial variance. This email has gone nowhere, I can’t even see how I got ot here from wheer I started. Talk bout you tangents. Anyway I have a meeting scheduled for tomorrow at 2pm to initiate the reengineering of our core processes and dialogue about the offshoring operation which will hopefully close the budget and revenue divergence, but prehaps before that if youre in, you and me and C can go get some coffe just for fifteen may be tweenty minutes. But what are the chances of all of us hving freetime at the sametime? And by he time I’ve walkd to where you are I’ll probbly get asked, like I did that oher time, to join a task force on quality and sequestered into the boardroom to set preliminary milestones so we can aim to begin achieving our financial key performance indicators. It’d be easyer if we were closer. But Id better go. Its gettin late now, and if I m here much longer peopel will think I love here. live her. Live here. Got there in th end.



ALLAN DREW haikupoemization series IT infrastructure virtualization. Sandwich crumbs feed ants in the keyboard.

End-to-end process rationalization. An hour passed straightening a paperclip.

In the budget optimisation meeting pocket calculators bump against loose change.

Profit maximization seminar. Seventy-eight slides. Font too small to read.

Haikupoemization. insert clever breaks: morning and afternoon tea.

Haikupoemization: insert second line and complete finalization.




a tear in a giant leaf glimpse of trees and sky this land where I am a stranger from the opposite side of town – where weird plants flourish, this large leaf’s name is un known



Sarah Katharina Kayss depressed subcore


otential annihilation as defined by Nietzsche” somebody suggested. I am in favour of the dance on the volcano, physical effects and paralytic human history. In favour of glasses on the tip of the nose. In favour of relevant historiography. Cosmopolitan Real Politics make me laugh. Tears in the eyes. Unsaturated disgust. I know it is not funny. All those controversies and stereotypes. History is consulted. Naturally, the presence feels neglected. Instruments of organisation, abstruse. Outputs and knowledge horizons. I might as well go to a whorehouse. Reciprocity and hybridity of processes that communicate knowledge are tomorrow´s plague. The research of contemporary history is introduced. Accentuation´s highlights. I want to be in touch with the opposite sex. Hopeless. Men are getting out of hand. Women keep gaining weight. A third way for Germany. A third way for me. I request it. A new species. An extended and newly organised reference spectrum. A small man scowls from the corner of his eyes. He is smart and a suitable dictator yet because of his height. He is not going to disturb the nuclear industry. Neither cultural - historical – I beg your pardon. One has to deduce premises. Personally, I do not. But that is a whole different story. I want to be autonomous at least. In my dreams I dig up dead bodies in Cambodia. The bodies are missing their heads. I used to have a game that would let me compound human bodies from templates. Asians look so much alike to me that I do not succeed in compounding them. Besides, liability is excluded. Adjusted definitions of institutions are no help. Even the reflection of it fails at the very basics. Risk discourses. Bollocks. So is the frankness of the future. It is called different perception of risks. It includes apocalyptic experiences in my mind. I do not get over the stress ratio. At this stage it is pointless. Here, the knowledge spectrum is superficial. In the case of most people it is not existent. The productive efficiency declines. In a plenary meeting I am the only one in favour of a new war to eliminate fools. All commonly used means of elimination are now an offence. Thus I wait for a natural catastrophe to do the overall elimination. As if it were a risk. We would get a new beginning. Per se. Every other person is an idiot. That is my estimation. So, the recall factor of latent excision is fairly high. I am irritated. The small man asked me to leave the room. That happens all the time. This way the business remains unfinished. Several methods have been up for debate but mine was the most effective. Individual responsibility is not sanctioned anyway. Absolute liability moves towards zero. According to that, conventionalisation is aimed at insurance companies. It worked before with that small man. By now he yells so loud, it almost seems ridiculous that he called ME a psycho. Here, theories of rationalisation exclude themselves all the 22


Sarah Katharina Kayss

time. The small one is almost crying as I do not listen to him. Established methods simply do not make an impression on me. Conventional ones neither. Thus it is urgent to draft a new approach. He keeps on screaming. He does not even stop when I start to cover my ears. Though a little cushioned, I can still hear his voice. I am so desperate, even a conversion to Islam seems possible. While thinking about it I do not realise that the small man collapsed. With his head blushed he looks like Arielle´s friend Sebastian. I do not understand his sign language. There is something he wants to say. I actually do not care too much but I do him a favour and remove the little toilet paper balls from my ears that I had put in earlier. To my shame I have to admit that I am not able to give a rÊsumÊ. In that case, principles for a balance of risks do not work. I think the small man is dead. I let my mind wander and lost track of him for a moment. The horizon of expectations does not apply here. Problems cannot be solved completely in any case. Now that he is dead, a battery of questions remains unanswered anyway. I do not want to and I am not able to develop sites of fracture. Broad and articulated concepts of danger go down or alternatively merge into each other. Definitions of analysis and resources intertwine - so, that problem is not interesting but rather inevitable. Had this person just said that he finally wanted to die? I think so.




in the inebriated scaffolding rusted yellow branches push out screaming red / velvet / maples drop japanese stars in the coffin of my one limp eye




no hand paper down toilet

Subject - me pissing lines are drawn in the sand and on the pebbles heading towards the lights the bars and the neon breathe sea air mingled with generator diesel down at the docks the icehouse has been converted Marlene is on the wall and I’m back in the Bistro in 1985 third room before it all began and here it continues like the ebbing tide communication with the added advantage of instant photography




untitled (alley 1)

still, dimensions variable, video (duration 16:26 mins), 2008




untitled (footbridge 1)

still, dimensions variable, video; duration 7:04 mins, 2008



TIFFANY REWA NEWRICK untitled (a conversation with the body)

still, approx. 2.93m long x 2.2m high each, video (two of: duration 24:05mins) (silent), projector (two of), DVD player (two of); installation 2009

untitled (in situ study)

dimensions variable, 0.4 mm polyethylene, cotton, seal, air (two of); installation, 2010




untitled (still)

dimensions variable, 0.4 mm polyethylene, cotton, seal, air; installation, 2008





n September 2010, I was trawling through the Australian webzine, the Otoliths, when I discovered a piece of word art that summed up, in its entirety, exactly how I felt about poetry. It was bold. It was colourful and, most importantly, its interpretative content was ambiguous. Typical for me, I can’t remember the name of the work. However, I do remember the name of the auteur: Mr. John M. Bennett. John is a recurrent name in both experimental text and visual art circles. He has published over 300 books and chapbooks of poetry and other materials, including rOlling COMBers (Potes & Poets Press), Loose Watch (Invisible Press), The Peel (Anabasis, 2004) and Instruction Book (Luna Bisonte Prods, 2006). He was the editor and publisher of Lost and Found Times from 1975 until 2005 and he currently serves as the Curator of the Avant Writing Collection at The Ohio State University Libraries.

'Visual poetry' is a broad definition. Your work ranges from formalised approaches (like Lettrism) to intuitive asemic writings. However, where do you place yourself in the various writing 'traditions?' First off, visual poetry is not really the main body of my work, it’s more a kind of extreme offshoot of tendencies that exist in all my work, the bulk of which is textual poetry (or “poetry”!). But as I’ve stated in any number of places, I tend to think of ALL poetry as visual, in that the blank space at the ends of lines is something perceived visually. (Prose poems have that space in its absence, which is also a presence). The more extremely or explicitly visual aspects of my work can be seen as an expansion of that idea. And the same goes for the conceptual, digital, performative, and even 3-dimension aspects of what I do. As to how I place myself within various traditions and/or theoretical constructs, the simple answer is: I don’t. [I have] Never been much interested in theories about writing, and certainly have never written with any particular theory in mind. Obviously, someone of theoretical bent could probably construct a theory from the totality of my work, but I have no interest in doing that myself. As to traditions, I suppose I can be seen as being associated with part or parts of various avant-garde traditions, but I’ve never consciously or deliberately “followed” any of them. There are individual poets and artists who, at various times, have meant a lot to me, and who have some kind of presence in my literary being. 30



If you’re not consciously ascribing to a particular thought or tradition, how do you ‘arrive’ at each poetic creation? The appeal of writing to me is that I have no idea what’s going to appear on the page in front of me. Except in the case where I’ve discovered a new form or process that way; if I like it, I will often use the form again. But that’s like an empty glass: I still have no idea what’s going to go in it. When I was much younger, and feeling that the poetry I read was not fulfilling the need I have for poetry, I decided that my life would be spent changing the language, or at least the language of poetry. It’s pretty clear to me, from my study of the history of literatures, that the people who have done that, changed the language and really changed what poetry is, are the ones who have created work that simply does not fit into the reigning critical dialectic or mesh with what people expect poetry to be. So there are no categories for it. Yet. Nor is there any way for such a poet to “plan” what he/she is going to write. It hasn’t been discovered yet! I actually now believe I have succeeded in changing the language of poetry. Which is why I really can’t answer questions like yours, which assume that the poet has learned from a particular tradition, has been schooled in some way. I could also simply be hallucinating in my old age! What do you mean by ‘change the language of poetry’? Do you try to direct the reader’s interpretation of any given work? Actually, I do have some work that uses “unrecognizable” words and graphemes - confer my book Textis Globbolalicus ( and I’ve done quite a bit of asemic work. But, yes, the bulk of what I’ve done is recognizle in those ways. So “changing the language” means changing the way language works, how it means, what it means, etc. I write a language that comes from another current/ process in the mind. It’s a linguistic process that has to be learned, separately, like any other; like speaking, thinking, writing prose, translating; whatever. I always decline to interpret my writing, because I think of a poem or a text as a mirror in which the reader/perceiver sees him or her self. So that if I say what something “means” to me, the reader accepts that, or tends to, and the richness of the piece is lost. The truth is, there is no definitive reading of my stuff; it looks different to me every time I regard it. This is a good thing. REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


JOHN M. BENNETT How accepting is the market for textual/visual poetic experiments? There is no “market” for what I do. No one buys it. A lot of people read it. It’s generally free. In recent years I’ve noticed a lot of younger writers who seem influenced by it, or [are] encouraged to do crazy things with their writing. That is wonderful! I have seen a few collaborative works by yourself and Sheila E. Murphy. How do you negotiate the creative sharing without impeding the other person’s input? It’s not so much a negotiation as a flow of responses back and forth that tends toward creating a new, third voice that is unlike either of the two (or more!) dialoguers. So there’s no “impeding”; on the contrary, there is an opening and a discovery. Human beings are very social beings, and, as in all social interactions, in collaborative writing each of the parties becomes a different “person” in the context of the interaction. This suggests that the idea of the solitary writer or artist is something of a myth. I do think, that in many different ways, some not very obvious or explicit, all writing is collaborative. I won’t let this one go: what do you mean that all writing is collaborative? All writing is collaborative in that in the final analysis one always writes, one has no choice in this, in a social context and in relation to various cultural contexts. Language itself is a sociocultural collaboration, created and constantly evolving, in human cultures. It is not only a form of communication, but one of the most important containers of culture. (I use culture in its anthropological sense).



JOHN M. BENNETT Are you working on any new projects at the moment? Where are your creative energies driving you? What I’m working on now is part of one long - lifelong - “project”. You would have to ask my psychiatrist or neurobiologist - if I had either of those - what the energies are that drive me! Visual/asemic poetry has come a long way in recent years, thanks to photo rendering software and cybermagazines. Has the internet diluted the poetic talent pool? I don’t think the internet and electronic media have diluted or devalued anything. They are just another place and means in which to work and create. More traditional media will continue to exist and to be utilized by people who value them, and by people who use them in new ways; they won’t really disappear. Thanks John. For the full list of John M. Bennett’s publications, please visit his webpage at



JOHN M. BENNETT dirt run

dirt ,run chowder my dust dog

“the weasel” soup the mute caught finger

chump use gerbils and kraut the numbered lint

haw how haw



JOHN M. BENNETT such a lump

senda conejo y mis tried an true )or )glue knuc kle(( chatter clod blank one )roast dog( mis escamoles )fo g li ce( testive )suit craw( hop py face the shoe in atl ]trash door[ rag bent storm chews the )))lake((( )rustles( loudly silent in atlhuacqui sore chew chudders and smokes best of tomb clot full na turd jakes spewed shoulder ah haw aw was nekkid lap glance my nurse doc mumble gore - end lactic fulla gus ano shutters arfs seat dogs bam rubble :core of thought: loop muzzle float aw raw dap pore knock )‘n knot( cheddar sale )or mail sneeze( burgered pocket bunny snore job sun the labpse the loot the labio lump



JOHN M. BENNETT shoulder linT or D





VAUGHAN RAPATAHANA spinning out of control

spinning out of control in this weird state there is no galaxy pertaining just a mass bolus of synapses frowning upon themselves

in oneric fury. sometimes a fleeting caesura ruptures the murky calm & weasels rip my flesh [thank Frank Zappa] in night substance, & you won’t be allowed in because you are too ugly oh homo sacer, fustian fabric u n r a v e l l I n g an inept deracine on an inapt axis




who’s holding the wheel? can I have a turn please; I paid my dues when we exploded at launch… & there’s no one else on the poop deck.



VAUGHAN RAPATAHANA environmental troika tahi






n u



w o




Ec o




no more l o n pms.










ALEXA WILSON starting: point


t started as a book inside a dance inside the body inside a body of text inside a roll of film inside a look inside a word inside a book. What's the hook? Like pages fluttering and wings flapping loose, from the studio I lay still on the floor like a suspended noose, just breathing, heart beating, and watched 2 crows circle each other way up the skirt of that sky. They were playing with themselves in me, in my eyes. I was making love to the sky. Through a tunnel like fingers tapping gently on the body the crows spun inside my eyes, unweaving any proof, and the clouds slid sideways like stage curtains removing their clothes to reveal the sun. I pointed to the light. And dropped into the darkness bright. I watched other crows join the dance circling and dancing inside my eyes, retina's turning upside down projecting out. Exorschism organasm. Like styes bursting inside my body flailing the universe sighs. Oh dear you. Size me up size me down, a roller coaster clown squealing, screaming, laughing, squeezing me, stealing me. Gravity healing me. And the rain started. Big drops dropping splat fucking big tears smashing onto my body like words slapping- whose silence created only conceptual dance, but it is a heart stance not a distance. It started the look, up and down, it kick started the book. Not for burning. Just pages turning, stages learning. Up a fucking ladder yearning. To know. No power other. Than. The grey pressed its predictable daily violence upon me, heavy dull beating, into me like a hook. I was hook line and sinker, myth blinker, bait, fish and fisherman going down on me, tongue reaching inside, licking, biting my own lips, feeling around, gutting feeling, stunned mullet peeling, reeling myself in like film fleshed narcissism shOUT. I was boat and ocean bobbing to my own story. Villain and heroine shot down in a blaze of glory. The thunder clapped like an audience as the sun glared down on me. Water collapsing in birth. I turned over, tears dripping to the floor, turned the globe, rotated the Earth, put my finger on a point. Starting Point. A country, shut my eyes and stabbed. What landed? He desired and thrust into me and my life. I loved him for it and I should. Our eyes caught each other in the half light. What was seen and felt in that film night glow? Who can fucking know? My finger tracing his body landed like free falling tree felling. In. Berlin. That’s where the film started. The dance stopped. The Earth moved. He clapped my hands and pressed his tongue into my mouth to plug up pointless words, excavated inner herds and ironed straight my curves with 42


ALEXA WILSON his own lack of words. I made him soft to hard, he started out soft and as he grew more virile, as his pleasure matched mine in desire fire fires fire... in comfortability trustability, his heart became more hard too. Yep true. And as passion grows with air or water. Points its finger to the sun, falls into the darkness run, it finds moles and holes and gaps and feelings wet there, intentions and meanings met slippery there...and thrustings and bird divings and callings of truth there, Planes lifting and landing there...coming and going, toing and froing, what is left there when the parts fall away... when we part lips, split hips and plant pips? Is a body full of pain. The pain body is awakened inside each sex. As easy as the day split from the night. The small lonely dance pushing through the Earth to sun and water, to drag the mirror through the streets against a tide of world dance - no way across the street - floats blocking the lone performance artist in the street. How could a dance ever feel SO alone? In Germany we meet - a meeting of the minds you and I, dancer and reader, in the filmic ties and estranged lies this psycho truth binds, a shower plug eye sooth death loop. Edgar Allan Poe - he said what? ‘there is nothing more poetic than the death of a beautiful woman?’ It’s the lovely bones, it’s David Lynch, it’s Prime Time t.v., it’s Nick Cave, it’s hook to every good story, it’s the dance...of what glory? Giselle ballet, the heartbroken women who dance a man to death if he enters their forest...but she dances him to dawn instead when he comes to find her to keep him alive and safe from the other dancing ghosts. They are all ghosts. Perfect Hosts. Cheers to the revolution. Swig, bamb, burb. That is Germany. A place of fairy tales good and bad, swans, foxes, crows and bats and squirrels and wolves. A land so full of pain. Laid spread upon the Earth’s body. Poor body, poor Germany, poor Earth, poor me. You poor suffering wretched creature. Who would choose this? Severed brain and heart like that wall they put through it. Its as if they put it through me like earrings, noserings. Adornment painful, REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


ALEXA WILSON an initiation ceremony I’m not aware of. Haunted. In every corner by cruelty, control, terror, the burning of witches, the turning of bodies in piles, the burning of books, the torture of women and children and bullet holes through the truth of any soul. ‘When you burn books you will inevitably end up burning people.’- famous quote by some famous German dude hundreds of years ago. Yeah I don’t fucken know. Yes the wood's are alive there. There there. The trees have eyes and memories and secrets, and you can make love to them as you do a man or woman and infact - you may find more love there. They have been forgotten. Just like books. And they are desperate for love and the same dance sway trance ring around your prance may just chance. Dance motherfucker dance. The trees are ALIVE. But you want a story don't you? Actually, really actually. You dearest reader. Ego Massage Healer. Not prose a rose, not poetry dysentery. NZ from Germany. This film-age pillage in the village of collective BODy spillage. Or would you rather a dance? A chance? Complexity simplified into the immensity of feeling or sexy sex expressed through the body - oh Earnest, Ernie the muppet, untainted by the cynicism of post 70s confusionism. WHAT kind of story or dance would you like in a jumble sale of words spewing from the volcanic author of spastic movement lost down a dark lane on a cobble like a speck of sand? Pick a Path. I'm lost. So obviously. Weg- it means in German 'path- way' or 'away- gone' Dorothythere's no place like? Pick a movement. What's YOUR movement? ReEvolution. Reelintuiton. She made a naked dance with an axe & mirror. She tossed the cape over her face and she pulled down her knickers to Mexican music with a candle and swung the axe in the dark. That was her dance for Berlin. Filmed and put on YouTube. Leave it to the critics to write. What was all that about? Little Red Riding Hood? 44


ALEXA WILSON Hahaha. This body is used. Recycled souls and bodies and thoughts and ideas and movements and sexes and plastics and glasses and papers and used to ocean. And waves (hallo) and ocean. Not peopled land expanse abunDANCE. What abundance? The sky continues to confess with its thunderous thought penile apparatus (state apparatus this and that blat) with its thunderous press - publish me - press me- flat on the a score...musical whore. Will YOU? Publish or rerecord repeat delete repleat complete deplete My 55 expressions in half an hour? Man, can I have a shower? Quote me on this... site me in this site expression detention anal retention attention - I’m from the mystical windy island in the Pacific that lights up every German face like Rudolf’s nose- ‘you are from New Zealand?’ ...yes,’s very beautiful there so what am i doing here? Yes. It’s a starting point. In a conversation. It goes nowhere...WEG. Why don’t you just give me a job thanks? I can give you tourist tips later. Swapsies. You read for me I dance for you, we watch a film together and make love on the couch. Out of words struth. Marathon of interdisciplinary no disciplinary truth. You cannot control this stranger. Something something stranger. A danger...something something...went wrong in this cross-cultural swap. You only want me to life model, what again? What? Back to the sky. This guy? Nup. Back in the sky. I fly. Home to you. To dance, sing and chant. Preach, be pornographic and rant. Dear reader, its true. It’s a starting point. A date with this line. Am I winning on time? It’s a point, I point. Up down up. REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


ALEXA WILSON My bones are blue. The sky is red. Like my lips, spread. Like the dawn over high above white cloud thick. I kiss this bliss into you. Fade to your thoughts. Away from mine. Back to you. How do we end this starting point disclosure? You’re up. You’re next. I can see you. I can feel you. I have no psychic readings for you. Except keep it true. Whatever you do. Who seduced who? You better have something real to say next time we meet. Delete delete delete delete. I spread out. I spread like fire. I spread. Desire. Kick start the point. Eyeball point. Follow through. You.





RICKY GARNI midnight snack

You know that feeling when you look in the refrigerator and you think you have two pears and you only have one pear and it says I am an apple and it is holding a knife to the throat of a pear that’s saying Please Help Me and you say to yourself I guess I have one apple and one pear after all not two pears and no apples or maybe two pears and one pear wants to be an apple I guess I also have a knife a knife oh so terrible




i take a break from teaching to read majorie perloff

Your face is the antithesis to my silent charm. Your pun is the form of my face. Your causal association is often casual It has lain in vain by my fumbling form It is the fourth part to my thesis an individual silence movement and what comes out after a radical turn in the bed is a liminal, bursting word the antithesis of my begrudging hands and my unfolding, acoustic mouth.



NOEL CANLAS small stone

Assume this is indeed a stone set apart from all others. (Lawrence Fixel)


magine you’re holding a small stone in your hand. Imagination being fertile, you start having some thoughts. You come up with the following.

Like this small stone in the hand holding secrets, you imagine just a cold object, uselessly lying around, this faceless sea. You hesitate about those commas, and the capital letter at the beginning, and the period at the end, elements that contribute to the idea that this is a sentence, which is true, and have the advantage of suggesting circularity and closure. But you want to replicate the act of imagining, and the kind of ambiguities it creates, for your reader, and to put the reader in the same bind that you find yourself in. So you do away with the comma, and relax the bond of syntax by putting spaces around the lines. Thus, Like this small stone in the hand holding secrets you imagine just a cold object uselessly lying around this faceless sea. Not content, feeling the syntax is still too strong that the ambiguities you wanted might not come off very well, you decide to get rid of this line altogether, and say: Like this small stone in the hand holding secrets you imagine just a cold object uselessly lying around this faceless sea. 50



You also think of running a permutation of this series to dramatize the irresolvable dialectic you were imagining, pushing the eye around so that it won’t settle in a fulcrum, or find an Archimedean point of reading. However, this is feeding everything to the fish, and it would have been probably better to let the syntax of a first glance dominate, and hope that succeeding glances would loosen the bonds, but at the same time, entrap the eye deeper and deeper into the Endless Bind, with or without the presence of syntax. (Or, probably it’s even enough just to say, “This faceless sea.”) At any rate, that’s how you imagine it would be like.




melissa fergusson & the charlatan cinic


elissa Fergusson has an extensive twenty-six year background in theatre and writing. Her impressive body of work includes winning the Wildcards 2 for her direction of Mark Andrew's Tipping Point at the 2010 Short + Sweet Festival in Auckland. She moved on to write and direct the play Motherlock which she performed at the 2010 Melbourne Fringe Festival before taking it to the Wellington and Auckland Fringe Festivals in 2011. Only last month, she released her latest directing venture, Gary Henderson's Skin Tight at the Musgrove Studio which received enthusiastic reviews for her bold treatment of theatrical performance. Melissa is an active writer of new stage and screen plays with the focus to produce internationally and in this article, she writes about her theatre organisation, the charlatan clinic. After eight years in the making, charlatan clinic was launched in May 2011 as a progressive theatre organisation that values controversial themes (and resident playwrights) as well as using topical subject matter as the prime mover for passionate storytelling. Performing privately and publicly at schools and theatres, Charlatan clinic is dedicated to educating audiences, here and offshore, through the medium of contemporary theatre. ‘Charlatan’ is defined as a person who pretends or claims to have more knowledge or skill then he or she possesses. A quack. Doesn’t that definition describe every actor, play, book and/or work in terms of fiction or character? I was sold. My initial idea for charlatan clinic was Charlatan Clinic launch, May 2011 period costume whilst Far right: Melissa Fergusson * living in London. I commissioned a costume designer to draw some sketches based on superhero, cartoon, gangster and geisha influences. I approved ten designs before they were manufactured at the MIG pattern house (of the Vivienne Westwood collection fame) in North London. It was a costly venture but with the help of a supportive friend, I managed finance the production of the costumes. In 2009, I showcased two prototypes to potential clientele in Auckland. 52


CHARLATAN CLINIC I grew up in the rag trade and trained as makeup artist in the UK. Drag makeup has always appealed to me and I visited Berlin where I studied their Avant Garde style on the street and stage. I also acquainted myself with German wig/makeup houses, purchasing prototypes for my reference. After many meetings with Angel investors, however, the much needed financial injection proved more difficult to secure than I imagined. Working for cosmetics houses, catwalk shows and freelance soon started to wear so I turned my hand to my passion, words. I have written a few plays now, namely ‘Motherlock’ and ‘Phobia’ and three The Charlatan Clinic launch offered others in draft format. The formation performances throughout the night. * of the charlatan clinic has been a natural progression from my initial forays into the world of theatre. I have plans to visit a few secondary schools in Auckland and Northland which have high teenage pregnancy ratios, to facilitate the ‘Motherlock’ script with my actor, myself and a cameraman. Drama is an amazing outlet to let go of internal pain. ‘Motherlock’ touches on the choices of becoming a Mother. My intention is to educate through the text and to ask the questions surrounding why we behave the way we do. Charlatan clinic will continue to evolve as a company as it brings theatre to the people through performance, blogging, footage and educational clinics.

Director Melissa Fergusson directing the cast of Skin Tight, Julia Croft and Chris Neels. * * Photographs courtesy of the Charlatan Clinic







D. THOMAS HUNTER the day they took my dad away


t wasn’t too hard to call the ambulance this time but it was a real shock that they turned up with a camera crew. At first I thought that they were making a training video but in the end it turned out that they were making a TV show about the ambulance people. Dad had only consumed vodka and cigarette smoke for over a week now. Worse than that, he hadn’t moved from his mattress in front of the TV and I knew that the house smelled bad but I’d gotten used to it. Of course, I didn’t really like the camera crew being there. People who see my dad usually behave in a similar way. First they are shocked, like they’ve walked into a glass door, and then they look at me with great pity. Then they’re shocked again and it’s like they blame me for the state that my old man’s in. Then it switches back to pity again. The fellah with the camera was straight in there. He was funny to watch. He would film for a little while, all still and crouched and careful. Then all of a sudden he would spring into life and march to other side of the room and crouch again, just like a cat stalking a bird. The ambulance man kept talking to the camera but he didn’t really say anything. But they didn’t really do anything either. The pretty girl that was with the cameraman didn’t come inside; she stood in the doorway and called me over. She talked to me about what they were doing and asked me to sign a form. She asked me if it was my house and I said it was. She asked me how long I had let my father stay for and she seemed really surprised when I said that it was his house too and that we had always lived together. Then she asked me to sign another form then she told me not to worry and that they probably wouldn’t use what they filmed anyway. They took his pulse and then his blood pressure and then they picked him up and put him on their little chair with wheels that can fold out into a stretcher. I don’t know why they make such a fuss. Dad is so skinny I could just about carry him with one hand. It was when they picked him up that the cameraman ran out of the house and wretched in the driveway. Then he apologized to me and went back inside. He filmed them taking dad out and asked the ambulance men to explain what they were doing and why. They put him in the ambulance and the cameraman went back inside and started filming the living room. He filmed the sheets, the mattress, dad’s mess on the carpet, the pile of cigarette stubs, the empty vodka bottles. As I watched him filming the vodka bottles they suddenly struck me as quite beautiful. They were so clean amongst all that filth and they were glinting in the sunlight. Then he filmed the TV, the stereo, the ornaments, the pictures on the wall – all sorts of stuff, from all sorts of angles. The girl called him over and they stepped outside and talked for a 56


D. THOMAS HUNTER moment. The cameraman came over to me and introduced himself with a smile and asked how I was feeling. Just as I started to answer he raised the camera up and started filming me. He asked me about my dad and how long he had been an alcoholic for. He asked me if it had been hard to call the ambulance and have him taken away and then he poked his head out from behind the camera and looked at me and nodded with a sympathetic frown on his face. He asked if this had happened before and if this was the worst he had been then he stopped and thought for a minute. He smiled and said that I seemed like a really normal young guy and that when he looked around the house he was struck by how clean it was apart from the spot where my dad was but he trailed off and I didn’t answer because it wasn’t really a question.



J.D. MITCHELL-LUMSDEN listen my children and you

tory of mr do med of a cork with feud when feud even a few more ess of the s eheu faces



J.D. MITCHELL-LUMSDEN do not take a protector

in of be to him who made his go on from which we have so that show some our he is and book it guidance saying do not take me those with was had most you will land when for first two they among houses back turn against them if your own people as time again hell this news man ever seek know years read goes soul does its only nor can until send lives many did after life what desire these their all out confined see much respect other god has or both say speak my up I best minds are due hand should afterwards means fear wrong way one just let exceed about fair better end follow cannot cut repeated save there were would been power above praise understand place between alone unjust become us heads while enemy upon injustice men said showed tell few forces hold no sea afflicts matter carry things by than already taste death truth come like flow face house am becomes because disgrace




1 in summer & at the door’s freedom: exhaust in the traffic 2 a discrete A or not— having followed closely I’m still on the phone 3 for those about or around the priest takes off his wings




song in v

Come to me. Two lines. Other colours— purple and gold robes on leisure holiday starlit as the geese for sale at the yen market— other colours—pale blue, the green stem of flowers— the initial plan at the water’s edge— the rain clouds in the sky— come to me.




Laterals grasping at what is behind the windmill of the sun, holding closely to the tides, eccentric. Maybe give them what they associate for in summer the cover is the other sun in the purple sky— whorling at midnight— candy



RODNEY NELSON demain matin

did you forget that your awaited tomorrow would be January and have the wind to abate you in a morning of ash white and silver did you forget the necessary walk north on a street of bone china not knowing a name to cry venez m’aider to among any living but the awaiting might have come from other dulled mentation in a room you might have wanted morning only for the January it would bring





must admit that this hastily rented room has acquired a rather determined aesthetic under my recent ministrations, the aesthetic that fitness for purpose brings to the world I inhabit...a world of timeless values, constancy, things of beauty swept away on a tide of unremembering. Some things can never be erased from memory which is why there are things you should never see, and you‘d think it would be possible to turn away from those things, to hide behind your hands or turn on some kind of cosmic pop-up blocker to shut them out. But it’s not. They live out there until, until…some things can never be erased from memory but memory itself can be erased. And it comes as a surprise to me that the unsurprising existence of this reality may come as a surprise to you. But that, after all, is why we are here - as witness, as surrogate, just in case. And from an evolutionary standpoint, a shared purpose, to be there just in case, as surrogates and as sometimes reliable witnesses - here, in the palm of my hand, the Vitruvian proportions tattooed in a fading spiral on my arm… a palm is the width of four fingers a foot is the width of four palms a cubit is the width of six palms a pace is four cubits a man's height is four cubits the length of a man's outspread arms is equal to his height the distance from the hairline to the bottom of the chin is one tenth of a man’s height the distance from the top of the head to the bottom of the chin is one eighth of a man’s height the distance from the bottom of the neck to the hairline is one sixth of a man’s height the maximum width of the shoulders is a…


The man himself, circum orbem, on my front, Π + 1 = 0, Euler’s identity carved on the back of my neck. Carved, take note - a strategy 64



in place here. Speech, an unreliable witness to thought, writing a mortal form of witness…things of beauty…where permanence is paramount, durability dictates. Durabilis in extremis resembles the immortal, and perfection being the enemy of good-enough, I will settle for the likeness. Strategy - we’ll come back to that. Let me show you round. Things of utility stand ready. A subcompact 16 gigabyte memory card sits in a benchtop sterilizer, clear plastic case agape to gasp at the ethylene oxide which will see it fit to make the short journey to McBurney’s point. The plastic drapes have been disinfected and you’d need gloves if you were to touch anything. The Lignocaine is beginning to take effect so I get ready. Facing the mirror we can see where I’ve marked the spot over the right side of my abdomen that is one-third of the distance from the anterior superior iliac spine to the umbilicus - McBurney’s point, or the place where you root for the appendix. Not that there’s anything wrong with mine but ever since Kane did it back in the day, it’s proved a convenient and accessible location for home surgery should you feel the urge. The Lanz incision will heal neatly. It bleeds a lot and with only two hands it’s hard to swab and cut, but a little transglutaminase sprinkled sparingly over the wound gets us back on track. Fat is next and I divide it down to where I can see the silvery white flat broad tendons of the external aponeurosis, splitting tissue and infinitives along the line of fibres as we boldly go in search of the peritoneum which means I first must deal with the internal oblique muscle using my fingers to enlarge the split made with scissors. My left hand is getting cramps from holding open the wound which is slippery and starting to bleed more than I’d like but here we are at last. Pulling up the peritoneum and tenting it with a couple of clips is harder than it sounds but I get it done and open the peritoneum by stroking it with a scalpel. I’m in. And moments later so is the memory card, tucked away neatly between my appendix and caecum. Then I close it up – a suture for my future. ‘Self love is ne’er so vile a sin as self neglecting’, I murmur as she traces her fingers lightly if judgmentally, over the crowded document of my torso - she seems familiar but I can never be sure these days – and lingers briefly over the magnificent electrosurgical scarification that hides my own now healed intervention – it would be disaster to be rejected at this late stage for suspect fugitive organs. She’s curious, wants to know what it is - it’s a quick response code, or QR, readable by smart phone scanners – in case I get lost I say, in case I forget. She cocks an eyebrow, and smiles a wry smile as if in acknowledgement of my strangeness or my resourcefulness – hard to tell. REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)



It’s rather beautiful don’t you think and like everything else in what remains of me it has a rather determined aesthetic, the aesthetic that fitness for purpose brings to the world I inhabit - a world of timeless values, constancy, things of beauty swept away on a tide of unremembering. Some things can never be erased from memory but memory itself can be erased. Now she is weighing me - my weight is down below ninety kilograms - I’m shippable and storable. So it would appear that I now tick all the boxes that allow for the donation of my [future] cadaver for dissection and medical science. Luke 15:22 - ‘”celebrate and be glad, he was lost and is found”’. Thanks Luke. But as well we know – ‘what’s past is prologue’ and ‘duration but fleeting extension’, so while I can still remember them I bask in the anticipatory delights of future scenes of wonderment when memory is reclaimed.






word weave (white sands)

mixed media collage, 2011




word weave (dugout Incubator)

mixed media collage, 2011



TANTRA BENSKO birdlings > What are you greater than? Anyone mean to a bird. . And that's final. <> I can make that shape with my hands, but it's harder with my mouth. Can you? A bird can make it just by opening its beak. >< I have seen two birds kiss. >) I have even been kissed by a bird. On the lips. >: And in my nostrils. {} Sometimes, I wish I weren't human, but could fly, could sing all day and make the stomata underneath the leaves open with my voice, saying nothing, to let leaves breathe life in and out. \/ When birds dive downward, they figure out where they're going to land, and where the creature will be, amazing trajectories to plan on so precisely, don't you think?................. I wish words were as precise, and we could capture what we mean with one, single movement. A V. I wish I could twitter to you and you would know just what I mean. I wish I could find your heart and land this thought inside it, there. 70


TANTRA BENSKO ;-) I raised birds who fell from their nests, whose Mama’s got killed, who got stuck in the tar, and when my son was young, we raised one together, named Larry Bird. I never told him now much it reminded me of him.................. Instead, I kissed him in his ear. I don't think words are as good as little shapes, shapes of the lips that say nothing but maybe a little sound, just a little. ZZZ Once, I even kissed a bird when it was sleeping, and it only moved a little, and nestled back in, and waggled its leg a little in a dream. 00000000000000 Birds sit on eggs forever if you trick them just right with the warmth. I don't think that's quite right. ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Forever is a long time to a bird. “”””””””””” All that scratching around has got to get old. >|. . . I used to dig worms for a bird I raised, calling to it to come and get the worms. The rest of the flock wanted them dug for them too. So, I did. It was so exciting! Until they started getting too bold, and started flying into the windows of the house and dying....... I wish I could communicate beyond words, could have told them in some kind of signs what they needed to know. I wish I could go beyond language. I wish I could -----!*%$# The bird had a broken leg, and it broke it again, when my son and I were travelling with it in the car. We used to carry it on our top hats when we’d REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


TANTRA BENSKO go to a special coffee house to play chess. Its leg was crushed when my son was talking to it, and it flew on top of my sonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hat, while we were driving in the car, and hit a bump on the road, and made my son bounce up to the ceiling of the car. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It got over the broken leg, finally, and flew to the top of the house, for the first time, puffing up its chest, glorious, singing so triumphantly, so proudly, excited to finally be freeeeee. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE A hawk swooped down and carried it away. :-( Anything we say is dangerous, sometimes. Just a little squiggle maybe, all we need. A little kiss inside the ear. XOXO&




the metal whale

Our backs shadowed, chests sunlit in a town where your roots grew twisted, beyond my reach, claiming a whale lay in the lake, quiet, motionless. A sewage pipe altered your perception to the point of delusion as you swigged beer and smiled below two projections of light. Solely have I grasped the colourful creations you branded upon passing freights, calling them horses on which reputations travelled to unseen destinations. And when the whale arched its back, plunging into the mirror, all that remained of you were shoes beside my feet, worn thin by years of misunderstandings. Pinesaps sprouted from your soles, grew when I whispered your name into my granddaughter's ear, grew when she trotted across your roots, climbed atop your shoulders, and shouted your name so that the town could remember.




in one sense he is a cone Why is Paul here? In terms of an hour’s uneventful walk up to Burger King. His theories pollute at a gorilla’s pace. His small pox are Freud-people laughed at got backwards. Mocking French. Embalming steroids. For lunch has its ups. & its downs. The sequel is banana seat bicycle. Paul sits on it all afternoon. Reading Tzara. & Picabia has lost something that charms. Resembling a foot. The year has no name. For a zooming lens. Reflects air like a face. In the face of an inquiry: Where is the lost foot of Francis Picabia? What is real matters little to mind-bent Paul Éluard. I have married a lox. Is a movie a pome? A verb I can’t conjugate to celebrate spits on my Fiat. Feminine with death. Or the breadth of a height walking on stilts. Time moves us. Paul has a terrible left wandering eye. Misgauged during a small during. Crunch time parries. Paul turns & swings—Faceless gas giant. Xploding TNT voice in a vacuum. I can’t control his pungent hallucinations. He is telling sex jokes again. Ace detectives & a certain Miss “vert banana” Mississippi. Conjure up. Tiny tiny evolved. Crawlspace identities. Having licked us all rabid. In one sense we are cones. She pinches. & disqualifies. Exceptionally real. & yet not a cone at all. A wan little echo. A dead pearl in my hands. Who am I? Fluted as an angel in fiery 74


RAYMOND FARR Adidas. Ask no one my name! Least of all Paul Éluard! Or the oracle, Io, on Queens Blvd! I have never been to NY. Dunkin Donuts acts out supremely a gas that’s surreal. In a basket a nose. Or even near. Indefinite amounts of merde in a puddle. I draw current blank pages. But first see minikins (Mod. Dutch). As Iowa plays mahjong. A seven pickle interlude proceeds with its plan. A seven pickle interlude has one personality—A folk hero douche bag. Gutted Sunday sturgeon ivory as particles of particulate matter. No origin. Paul Éluard. Or the frog out of space for space’s sake. Arrives hungry. Painted up flap jack sundered by Sunday wonders. & sorry is a clue no one thinks sweet. Paul sets out. Photo-still. A sprinkle of fire ants. Calm as a hasbeen. Sprinting into. Tumbling orchards of tumbling out shadows. Someone calls his bluff. A bad name. His expression is doughy-eyed manipulationism. A “mod” Lawrence Welk, sd. The sea shells crumble. Soft as a heel. In bed with purple pretty acid. Cindy bites remote control. & someone sd: Connect the dots. To Paul Éluard. & Paul Éluard. Disappears. Swallowed by a canary. He wrote his own fetishes. His mouth tested positive for urine fables. & then only. A gimmick. To entertain blood in his urban myth brain. He typed REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


RAYMOND FARR “KEYBOARD” on a keyboard. Yes, surf board. I realize irony has a price. Sarcasm. Without process. Targets money. Ambient stylistics equal a French Monkey Hitting Keys. After lunch. They abort the mission bell tolls. Abhor’d wary cognizant wrestling mania. Out of his mind. Is this the real Paul Éluard? I have flowers here. For Gravy Jungle Box Seat at the Opera. Someone must sign. Or I’ll leave them. With Groucho. The small violet ones are purely complimentary. They all make me sick. I snag Paul & run. Pissed vinegar all Sunday at Burger King gas lobster. Diabetic wise. I vomit up despair. Not hair like my cat. Paul has efficient/coefficient usufruct eyes. Two powerful paradoxes. Twin light houses focused on. Limp as a petal. His sexual man. Spots him a five spot. Requires defragging. Interval. During which water is poured. Down onto noon. The moon of. Cause & effect-man cavorts as though spasming. & lynched. I have him listed as bearing the driftwood. & stopping. By woods. On a snowy evening thoroughfare. He has a place in this world. Of Paul Éluard and his saxophone underwear. He sings when he shaves. I manage a ball. Our page is an iris. The Ice Age of Syphilis. Open yr rational text books to man becomes dog. Yr seasonal rhythms should 76


RAYMOND FARR twinkle twinkle little pistolas. Opaque. As a pageant. Avid at six knees I insist across. We put ice. On a permanent basis. With Paul Ă&#x2030;luard. Whose lure is a hoax. Saunters thru Walgreens. Swan-like as dumbbells.




acrylic, pen and ink, 2011 78



acrylic, pen and ink, 2011 REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


JOSEPH PRAVDA the late eve-ning of adam But who shall dwell in these worlds if they be inhabited? . . . Are we or they Lords of the World? . . . And how are all things made for man?-Kepler (quoted in The Anatomy of Melancholy)


rowing numbers, even those automatized by their own everenfeebled television-addled brains, believed in the early years of the twenty-first century, that this world was being watched---even visited----by mortal intelligences far greater than theirs. And, as certain ‘learned’ men occupied themselves with peering ever-deeper into space (both inner and outer), they were themselves observed and analysed as a concerned parent might with a wayward child. Despite this state of affairs, orphan-like they simultaneously pondered just how alone they might be whilst perfecting their mastery of tribal warfare, oblivious to just who/what this Adam of the long-ago fable was, as well as to his very maker.’


pologies to H.G. Wells (what writer would presume to ‘update’ his classic opening paragraph to ‘War of the Worlds’----must have been, ahem, some hack, unlettered editor), he characteristically posed the big questions, and in the latter masterwork perhaps THE biggest: “Just who/what/why are we, and, where the bloody Hell is ‘here’?” From Wells, then, to Bostrom (et. al.) 1, from Plato’s allegorical cave to the simulation argument and its cousin, the multiverse (with its concomitant Everettian parallelism and branching of the universal wave function, Ψ) we want answers. Try finding Dr. Terrell of Voyager, etc. fame in the JPL directory; putting aside the proposition that he himself is, well, a simulant not eligible for such mundane, carbon-based listing, he does appear to have a job there; popularized by the Morgan Freeman hosted TV program ‘Through the Wormhole’, in the appropriate very first episode we are introduced to simulation and the Turing Test. This scientific entity, Dr. Terrell, puts a plastic brain model (simulation?) and a largely plastic laptop in a box; conjuring a test some forty years hence he puts it to us: ‘....if I get the same answer to my query, and can’t tell what the source of it was, well, then...........’. He goes on to show that, via a 1928 experiment in which electrons in a beam are ‘shot’ at a bunch of graphite atoms, the screen behind this operation reflects locations of all atoms, therefore, diffraction, therefore 80


JOSEPH PRAVDA matter is diffuse via finite form in the universe. It seems that this means that there are a finite number of stable components which are computable. Now this next part really grabbed me to the last stable finite component in my ‘being’ (more on this later): i.e., when you zoom in what you find is that atoms ARE pixels, which is to say that matter and everything else can be quantized. Talk about ‘mystery, the unknown, surprise’----bingo. And, with that, to our properly ‘special’ thematics. Is storytelling a way to solve a mystery? Some great writers and filmmakers seem to think so, and this particular sort of ‘uber-mystery’; long before ‘cyberspace’ became argot (owing to a certain expatriate author known as Gibson minting it), simulation was the hyperspatial home of Daniel F. Galoyue’s ‘identity units’. Perhaps fittingly, his tomes are not to be found on the bookshelves just before Mr. Gibson’s growing ouvre in a ‘place’ we know as three (at most, four) dimensional analog ‘real life’. Arthur Clarke, perhaps without precisely intending it with simulation in mind, crystalized the issue: “Sometimes I think we’re alone in the universe, and sometimes I think we’re not. In either case, the idea is quite staggering.” Staggeringly staggering is the proposition that analog creatures can digitize themselves, leading to the greatest imponderable: what sort of entity allowed this to take ‘place’----and just how, then, to define that rearview mirror image of ‘real’. Galoyue undertook to become the Samuel Johnson of this new lexicon in ‘Simulacrum 3’, first depicted by wunderkind German filmmaker J.W. Fassbinder for the, then, still new medium of television (aptly, in Germany, a still new half-nation, perhaps searching to, via mass communicative media, reunite itself electronically, as it were). In April of 2010, this production, as ‘World on a Wire’, saw its 35mm world premiere at New York’s MOMA, to reviews retrospectively remarking on its prescience, only casually recalling the tale’s authorship, not unlike praising Francis Bacon’s editorial/authorial genius portraying another long-forgotten author’s work, newly available as ‘The King James Version.’ Later, at century’s last gasp, another German director, Josef Rusnak, deployed a much less derivative version via digital projection in the cyber-melodrama ‘The Thirteenth Floor’, whose release, much to its demise, coincided with ‘The Matrix’, an unrelated yet truer synchronous revelation of the questioning of reality per se. The fascination had begun, and continues with greater width and depth than ever before, especially every time some tween or teenager (yes, too many adults are doing it, too, but with the same incurious level of awareness than their progeny) taps into an online ‘reality’ MMR game or ‘Second Life’, ‘The Sims’, etc. REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


JOSEPH PRAVDA The thrust of this realm----digital realism----is today ubiquitous, in an information age, itself driven by what it is attempting to describe: ‘I.T.’, its perfect summation, appropriately terse, acronymic and, ultimately opaque to the vast populace of a world of its consumers. Only via fictional portrayal can we gain the sort of ‘uberspace’ (my own term) from which to begin to comprehend............(again) IT. As pointed out by such notables as McLuhan in the sixties (I wonder if Galoyue read him) and currently by Gibson, the ‘Search’ button has become a literal extension of our nervous system, and, somewhat like the mythic Narcissus, we have become captivated by our own imagery. But, in a larger sense, has ‘it’, our imagery, become somehow more real to us, to the extent that we choose to ‘live’ there, both via increasingly realistic avatars (per Dr. Terrell, and Dr. Nick Bostrom’s simulation argument) and before ever-enveloping screens ‘into’ which we may now ‘enter’? As demonstrated by the seminal film ‘The Matrix’ ( I argue successor to Galoyue’s deep insights in ‘Simulacrum 3’), there is tremendous fascination with this technological ‘cathedral of place-finding’. (In 2007 the sci-fi enclave Readercon designated Galouye him a Cordwainer Smith Rediscovered Author. Dr. Richard Dawkins, Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University, has cited Galoyue as his favourite science fiction author). As timely inheritor of Tesla-ized modernity’s newest capabilities, these creative auteurs saw the literal manifestation of the ‘truth as stranger than fiction’ aphorism, itself, as potent truism. In the same way that Gibson, conveniently alive, describes science fiction as ‘a narrative strategy’ for reflecting upon the ‘incomprehensible now’ in his interviews, Galoyue saw as yet nonexistent digital recreation as but a potentially infinite layering of meta-realities, the Russian doll nesting of one within another. The American presager of the seemingly paranormal, Charles Fort remarked: “A social growth cannot find the use of steam engines until comes steam engine time.” At the very incipient front edge of digital engine time was D.F. Galoyue, finding uses only hinted at then; today, no less scientific luminaries than British Astronomer Royal Rees and JPL’s Rich Terrell (remember him?) concur that it is highly plausible that you, reading this, and I are ‘living’ within an ancestor simulation. Cool, you and I can forget about ‘death’, it’s more like: ‘Game Over, would you like to play again?’ Mystery solved. 2. Why are mysteries so powerful? Are we hard-wired to be in mystery, or, are we hard-wired to figure out mysteries? And where does pleasure and desire enter into 82


JOSEPH PRAVDA the equation? Well, for one thing, pleasure is found in the very language of this query, evincing the desire to operate as, well, thinking, problem-solving machines. ‘Hard-wired’---- indeed. But, by what/whom? That rhetorical and actual question is at the heart of this ultimate conundrum’s solution: find the game’s author, solve the puzzles IT lays out for you, ‘free will’, just another name for options, without which there’s no game. This does not imply, of course, that a ‘game’ must be frivolous; ‘war games’ come to mind (although, c’mon, why do we trust them to the generals?). On a more psychological level, though, Dr. Freud left us (and rather late in his career, the third of three tries as they tell it) with the Id, Ego and SuperEgo, about the origins of which he had no clue. In logic this is called begging the question. Dr. Jung went further, with his collective unconscious, but, ultimately, this only begs the same question in a larger way: pretty Russian dolls, again? Yes, we are rather flexibly ‘wired’, and especially to avoid at all cost quitting----it’s called suicide, and against the rules. GAME OVER, WOULD YOU LIKE TO PLAY AGAIN?




cruel bloom [inspired by a converge song called ‘cruel bloom’]

digital art, 2009 84





how does one redeem the act of defecation?

“Depression is often caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain,” they said. …or the act of defecation. …or men singing and whistling in the locker room… …or cancer in rats… …or the act of defecation. How does one redeem the act of defecation? “Redemption is often caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain,” they said.




attempting to “speak in tongues” at quarter-speed

Quinsot finetude porteno bonotu, Sine jee ja jee ja sine quo. Forarum menaitudinus. Pleariastum qualiderorum. Facit decorum, “moomsa quinsit” (“when in good company”). Que qway alorum, Manitou proctum fecit locum: Jee jay jingle berries. Decit Maestroarum: “When the king whistles, The crows disperse.” Lazradda.







ISOTOPES [CONTRIBUTORS] Alexa Wilson is a choreographer/performance artist who also writes and makes video. Her solo ‘Weg: A-Way’ won 4 Awards in the Auckland Fringe 2011. She has been commissioned by the Auckland Arts Festival to pitch for the next festival with the Auckland Arts Festival Award. She had a Goethe Institute Scholarship to study in Berlin where she lived for nearly 2 years. She has made interdisciplinary dance for 10 years, danced for Douglas Wright among others, won ‘Best Emerging Choreographer’ in the Listener 2004 and has made experimental films and written many published critiques of dance in New Zealand and Europe. Allan Drew pursues paid employment as a middle manager in a global corporation. Fifteen years ago Allan studied and trained in biochemistry and molecular biology. More recently, he began postgraduate study in English. Of late he’s started writing prose that wants to be poetry and poetry that looks like prose. His particular interest is the aesthetic possibilities of social discourses. Andrew Taylor is a Liverpool poet and co-editor of erbacce and erbacce-press. His is the author of eight collections to-date and has recently been thinking about minimalist poetry such as the pwoermds of Geof Huth. He has a PhD in Poetry and Poetics. Anna Kelly comes from the South Island, but lives in Palmerston North where she is a high school teacher of English and French. She has previously been published in Lumiere and Deep South. She wrote this poem while completing part of her thesis on two New Zealand poets at the University of Otago. Anna T. Mcleod was born in Poland, spent her childhood in Canada, and has been living in New Zealand for the past 18 years. Her first career was in healthcare, where she specialized as a Respiratory and Sleep Therapist. Nine years ago Anna made a career shift into art. At first she was as a self-taught bodycasting artist, setting up a home based business, and holding a solo exhibition at Upstairs Gallery Lopdell House, in May 2003. Since graduating from Elam School of Fine Arts two years ago, her practice has shifted to become more abstract and conceptual. Anna is a multi-media artist working in sculpture and installation. Her practice shifts between subjective experience to objective exploration of materials and processes. Anna loves to push the boundaries of materials as she explores the relationships between the organic/inorganic, micro/macro, inside/ outside. Recent work has been influenced by biomorphic architecture and the mathematical models within natural and biological systems. 90


ISOTOPES [CONTRIBUTORS] Barbara Strang has a passion for haiku and related forms. Her poetry collection The Corrosion Zone has just appeared with HeadworX. She edited the NZPS anthologies of 2009 and 2010. Her house is right by the Estuary, Christchurch, and luckily still intact. She holds an MA in Creative Writing (Vic). D. Thomas Hunter is more familiar with writing for TV documentaries and only knuckles down and writes some good, proper fiction when he’s in between contracts. He lives in Auckland. Diego Gedoz de Souza is a graphic design student from Brazil. His artworks are influenced by music like Punk and extreme Metal, horror movies and experimental art. Farhad Nabipour was born in Esfahan, Iran (Persia) in 1962. He began drawing in pencil at age three; three years later he was painting with oil. In 1990 he left Iran to find freedom of expression and to continue his professional career as an artist in New Zealand. “I could not have chosen a better place to live” he says. In 1992, he studied at Stott’s Correspondent Collage and gained a diploma in Graphic Design & Commercial Art. Farhad cites Monet, Cézanne and René Magritte and Salvador Dali as most influential. While his love of painting has made him a full-time artist, Farhad’s interests extend to include poetry, writing, graphic art, photography and film making. George McKim’s poetry has been accepted for publication, or has been published in The Dirty Napkin, Blaze Vox, Poets and Artists Magazine, Viral Cat, Tupelo Press Sappho Poetry Project, Leaf Garden Press, Clockwise Cat, 7 x 20 Journal, Eunoia, escarp, Eviscerator Heaven, Carcinogenic Poetry, Rust and Moth Journal and others. George is the editor of the poetry journal Psychic Meatloaf. He is also a visual artist and his artwork has been exhibited in group shows in galleries and museums and recently been accepted for publication in Otoliths, Portland Review Online, Viral Cat, Breadcrumb Scabs Poetry Journal and The New Post-literate: A Gallery Of Asemic Writing. Iain Britton: Poetry published widely in New Zealand and Australia and elsewhere. His new ebook has been published by The Red Ceilings Press (UK 2011). Oystercatcher Press (UK) published his 3rd collection in 2009. Kilmog Press his 4th in 2010.



ISOTOPES [CONTRIBUTORS] J.D. Mitchell-Lumsden co-edits Erg’s chapbook series and Cricket Online Review. His poems have appeared, or are forthcoming, in The Journal (UK), Lower East Side Review, Raft, Lilies and Cannonballs Review, Pool, Lamination Colony and elsewhere. He currently lives in Iowa City. Jen Besemer works with words, actions and images to expose hidden relationships (and discover new ones) between and within those media. “Misusing” text, processes and products to create camouflaged or hybrid forms, Jen comments on the entrenched systems of contemporary life and the unresolved contradictions they generate. Recent work has appeared or will appear this spring and fall in Jellyroll, PANK and ARTIFICE, and at The Fridge in Washington, D.C John Bucklow lives and works in Wellington NZ. He is author of Navigator published in UK by Greenwich Exchange and has exhibited his photographic and multimedia art in UK, Europe, and New Zealand. José Alberto de Hoyos Ramos lives in Auckland but hails originally from Saltillo, Mexico. Currently, he freelances within camera departments for television/film broadcast while also trying to manage his passion for photography. His work can be viewed at Joseph Pravda: Originally from Osaka, Japan, Jun Arita is currently living in New Zealand. As an artist and graphic designer, his work draws inspiration from Japanese art, Kanji and graffiti. Justin Robinson currently lives with his girlfriend in Santa Barbara, CA, where he studies creative writing at California State University Channel Islands. Laura Carter lives in Atlanta, Georgia, where she co-curates the Sun & Moon Presents reading series. She has recent work in Untitled Country Review and work is forthcoming in Hambone and TYPO. Nadeesha Godamunne is a recent fashion design postgraduate, having completed her Masters in Fashion Illustration in 2010 with First Class Honours. Godamunne breaks away from certain aesthetic boundaries associated with fashion illustration in an effort to reframe perceptions of the ideal fashion image. In this way, her works challenge certain visual codes used 92


ISOTOPES [CONTRIBUTORS] to talk about fashion. To date, Godamunne has been featured in a number of reputable publications such as The Australian Creative, Martin Dawber’s The Big Book of Fashion Illustration and Sandra Burke’s new Fashion Designer series. Noel C. Canlas is a writer/artist based in the Philippines. He has taught European Literature & entry-level French at U.P. for a few years before joining a media arts company. He sends experimental texts to blog sites in the U.S. His views on writing has led him to the frontiers of asemic art where he currently explores the intersections between language and its other. Raymond Farr lives and works out of his kitchen office in a mobile home in Ocala, FL. He has published widely, most recently in Otoliths, Raft, Indefinite Space, Liebamour, Counter Example Poetics, Ditch, and BlazeVox2k. He often blogs poems at AS-IS. He is editor of Blue & Yellow Dog and his books are available at Blue & Yellow Dog Book Shop Raymond Keen has recently completed his first volume of poetry, Down In Heaven, Up In Hell and is attempting to obtain publication at the present time. Five of his poems appeared in the July/August 2005 issue of The American Poetry Review. In 2010 Raymond’s poems have been published in the following literary journals: Pemmican Press, The Smoking Poet, Breadcrumb Scabs and Pismire. Although Raymond has had an interest in poetry for many years, his profession has been psychology: three years as a Navy Clinical Psychologist with a year in Vietnam (July 1967-July 68); the rest as a School Psychologist in the USA and overseas. He retired from psychology in 2006. Raymond lives with his wife Kemme in Sahuarita, AZ. They have two grown children. Ricky Garni is a graphic designer living in Carrboro, North Carolina. His work can be found in Everygreen Review, Camel Saloon, Used Furniture Review, Orion Headless and other places. His latest work, Lana Cantrell, is an internet hit. He didn’t know that many people knew her, but know he knows that many people do or would like to. Rodney Nelson is both older and “new” as a poet. He was on site for the first hippie wave to hit San Francisco and survived as an observer of the scenes that developed. His work got into mainstream journals early on; but he switched to fiction and did not write a poem for twenty-two years, restarting in the 2000s. See his page in the Poets & Writers directory: REM MAGAZINE VOLUME 2 (JULY 2011)


ISOTOPES [CONTRIBUTORS] He has worked as a copy editor in the American Southwest and now is back in his native Great Plains. Sarah Katharina Kayss, born 1985 in Koblenz (Germany), holds a B.A. in History and Comparative Religion from Ruhr University of Bochum. Her artwork, prose and poetry had been published in literary magazines in Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada and the USA. Most of her artwork and texts place emphasis on contemporary history, the philosophy of war and social anthropology. Sarah edits the PostPoetry Magazine and she currently studies Modern History in the M.A. programme at King´s College, University of London. Stephen Bett has had twelve books of poetry published, including: Re-Positioning (Ekstasis Editions, 2011), Track This: a book of relationship (BlazeVOX Books, 2010), S PLIT (Ekstasis Editions, 2009), Extreme Positions (Spuyten Duyvil Books, NYC, 2009), Sass â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;n Pass (Ekstasis Editions, 2008); Three Women (Ekstasis Editions, 2006); Nota Bene Poems: A Journey (Ekstasis Editions, 2005) and Trader Poets (Frog Hollow Press, 2003). A thirteenth book is due to come out: The Gross & Fine Geography: New & Selected Poems (Salmon Poetry, Ireland, 2012). His work has also appeared in over 100 journals in Canada, the U.S., England, Australia, New Zealand and Finland, as well as in three anthologies, and on radio. He lives in Vancouver. Tantra Bensko: MFA, teaches Experimental Literature, edits, and coaches writing. Naissance Press published her chapbook, and Night Publishing accepted her full length book. She has over 150 creative writing publications. She edits Exclusive Magazine,, and instigated the genre Lucid Fiction. She lives in Berkeley. Tiffany Rewa Newrick is a sculptor and installation artist, whose practice reflects on the performative nature of the sculptural object and its relationship with the body, particularly focusing on the dialogue between the three bodies: object, artist and viewer. Newrick graduated AUT University with a Master of Art & Design in 2009, and has presented solo exhibitions at the NZ Film Archive and City Gallery Wellington. Newrick was a finalist for The Miles Art Award (2010) and was included in The Sculpture Season, St Paul St Gallery, Auckland (2010), Living Room 09, Auckland and the Wintergarden Project, as part of the Auckland International Film Festival 2008. Back in the days of Word for Windows 2.0, Tim Gaze used to write short programs in the bug-ridden language WordBasic, to mangle words & letters in 94


ISOTOPES [CONTRIBUTORS] various ways. These days, he is more inclined to make abstract prints, using $2.50 tubes of paint on ordinary A4 paper. He believes that writers & poets need not be sedate middle-class animals that drink wine. Among other places, heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s proud of the work published in Abstract Comics: The Anthology, VLAK 1, noology & 100 Scenes. He lives in the Adelaide Hills of South Australia. Vaughan Rapatahana: Wife from Philippines. Kumusta po kaibigan. Lives in Hong Kong. Ni hao wo peng-yao. Writes all sorts of stuff. Published in all sorts of places around the globe. Written far too much about himself already.









Rem Magazine Volume 2 July 2011  

A journal of experimental writing

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