31 August 2012

24. color sutures

At the time of the equinoctial tides, certain ciliate creatures retreat too far across the sand, flee too far inland. When the sea calms down, they are unable to reach it again: they die in exile, trying to return to the increasingly distant water, to travel in reverse the path that an irresistible impulse, inscribed in them since birth, forced them to follow by imbuing them with its energy.

Those animals - or the genetic knowledge that runs through them, their harmony with the gravitational forces that control the tides - pay for their excess with their lives. Hypertelic creatures: they have pressed beyond their goals, as if from the very beginning, and to a disproportionate degree, encoded in their nature they had a lethal impulse for supplement, simulacrum and pageantry - since the same futile display can be found in the mimetic ornamentation developed by various species of butterflies.


In the Japanese film Kwaidan a web of mantras is written on the skin of a monk in order to save him from the nightly summons of evil spirits. But in their haste, the calligraphers, who work their way up from the feet as they cover his coveted body inch by inch, forget an ear. The demons stand over him and pull on that ear until they rip off the piece of unwritten skin.

Everything that is not textual is castratable.

(I fainted in the theater.)

30 August 2012

25. how to confess

recall your sins
with full knowledge and full consent
against the Church's commandments
  when was my last good Confession?
  did i seriously doubt my faith
    or put myself in danger of losing my faith through readings?
  did i read immoral books or magazines?

O my God
  i am heartily sorry for having offended you
  i detest all my sins
  i dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell

Bless me, father, for i have sinned
  you may respond
    you know that I love you
  you may continue
    my last good confession was...
      how many weeks
      months or years

Say the sins that you remember
  feel uneasy or ashamed
  ask the priest to assist you
    he will help you make a good confession
  mention in general any past sin for which you are sorry
    against charity, purity, etc

The priest will assign you some penance
Be willing to do the penance as soon as possible

28 August 2012

27. join the club

very bad problems
structured around a tabloid narrative

photographic evidence of
an unraveling
an epiphanic moment

the myth ultimately dictates
every debt must be paid
the same gyre cuts your lungs in half
into everything

26 August 2012

29. the our father

seek the truth

to call war state violence
is to foment terrorism

question the news
press the mute button

to call Bush fundamentalist
is to foment terrorism

study Blair's hand-gestures
shout "Down with Castlereagh"

to think "the universal human"
is to foment terrorism

junk language surround us
junk food comfort us

pray for us

CBU-72 cluster
pray for us

to be free from fear
is to foment terrorism

to feel free within

25 August 2012

30. curls

around the still body, waits 
for something biting and pure to emerge, draws
closer to the wooden railing, buzzes 
a fly (the wings circling kaleidoscope), Dutches 
to the ear (listening), swells
the pupil (what perfect light), cloaks 
the eye, uncloaks 
the eye (14 frames), follows 
the mirror (the glass reflecting Truth), slides 
past the chokes (the gray cloud stinging).

23 August 2012

32. i could save you

inserts recoil spring guide into recoil spring
inserts barrel into bottom of slide
attaches recoil spring and recoil spring guide to barrel-slide combination
attaches top assembly to frame
stands with completion in the right hand
leans forward
picks up magazine
inserts magazine
pushes until click
pulls slide back
ejects magazine into the left hand
ejects round from chamber
leans forward
places item onto blanket
picks up ejected round
replaces ejected round in magazine
sets magazine on bed
tautens blanket

22 August 2012

33. jubilant and the vulture (h sonnet)

the image presaged no celebration:
tribal bracelets and diamond-stud earring,
war-weary eyes
and tales from the front lines.
His red pickup truck;
a green garden hose.

A morality tale about a person
undone by the curse of fame.

sleeping pills
rat poison

Afterwards, he sat under a tree,
lit a cigarette, talked to God, and cried

clutching at autobiography, self-analysis, explanation, excuse.

21 August 2012

34. (to speak is to lie) do you know the

Zen story

of the mother who had just
lost her only son

everybody should be
a machine
                 (Pop Art is)

a pretty boring idea
must fall on what's there

perhaps height is not the right yardstick

two for sale next door
a bargain but they're just shells

i had the damnedest time with Silence

19 August 2012

36. that is moses and the prophets

After three days they found him
sitting among the teachers,
listening to them
and asking them questions. 

The consumer model implies, for instance, that university "services"--among them, courses--should be shaped to satisfy student tastes, and that students can use or waste these services as they see fit. When students think of themselves as consumers, they study only when it is convenient (like shopping), expect satisfaction with little effort, want knowledge served up in "easily digestible, bite-sized chunks," and assume that academic success, including graduation, is guaranteed. After all, failure--or consumer dissatisfaction--is "ruled out upon payment of one's tuition.”

When taken to its logical conclusion, as many students do, the consumer model implies that students buy grades by paying for them through learning. Students who subscribe to this notion try to be consumers by paying--that is learning--as little as possible. A few carry it even further, and believe that whenever they learn something they have actually lost in the exchange.

Needless to say, instructors who try to teach students more than the students have bargained for are going to run into trouble. Andrei Toom, an adjunct math instructor from Russia, reports his dismal experiences trying to teach anti-intellectual undergraduates consumed by the consumer mindset. "As soon as I started to explain to them something which was a little bit beyond the standard course, they asked suspiciously: 'Will this be on the test?' If I said, 'no,' they did not listen any more and showed clearly that I was doing something inappropriate.” When asked by students why he gave math problems unlike those in the textbook, Toom responded: "Because I want you to know elementary mathematics." Immediately an imposing train of students "stood up and tramped out.” A colleague of Toom's was also criticized for asking his students to learn more than students in another section. Students viewed this not as better teaching but as an iniquity.

The only safe course, under these circumstances, is to fall short of the syllabus, "but never go beyond.” No instructor ever need fear students or administrators showing up at the office demanding harder courses, more demanding workloads, and stricter grading. The system makes this impossible.

So, the message to instructors is, "the less you teach the less trouble you will have from students and administrators.” Both groups are perfectly willing to accept trivial courses, inflated grades, and mediocre standards because these corruptions help guarantee what both constituencies want--satisfied customers.

18 August 2012

37. resurrecting joab

"We will not allow her to fall from grace. Instead, we will be the sinners."
— From Afro Samurai: Resurrection

A character defined both by their obsessive loyalty toward a target character and by their vastly divergent (and comparatively "cynical") moral code.

The Poisonous Friend is usually attached to a pacifist protagonist or an idealistic villain. They tend to consider their "master" a person to be worshipped or protected at all costs — even ones that the master would not knowingly permit.

For example, if the master is a Fettered pacifist completely against killing his enemies, the Poisonous Friend might pay lip-service to this trait while the master is nearby... and then turn around and butcher the enemy behind the master's back. If caught, they'll claim they just "did what had to be done". Few masters catch on.

Sometimes the master's influence gets through to the Poisonous Friend, with results such as Badass Decay. In other cases, the Poisonous Friend continues to pose a danger both to the master's other friends (through jealousy) and to the enemy. The Love Interest is in particular danger of the Poisonous Friend if they suspect them of making the master "vulnerable".

Though sometimes introduced as anti-heroes or turncoats from the other side, they cease to be those things because they place their fundamental loyalty upon the shoulders of their "master". Basically they become a good guy's secretly-evil minion, or a bad guy's much-badder sidekick.

This character is often used when writers don't want to stain the "innocent" master's hands but still need a way to deal with those pesky defeated enemies. Even friends who have been explicitly told to behave or otherwise decided to hold back can still function in this regard if they have done something bad or really bad enough to intimidate the villains. If a particularly noble and idealistic hero has a particularly cruel and ruthless poisonous friend, the villain may hesitate to take advantage of that hero's idealism and kill him out of fear of what his buddy's response could be.

16 August 2012

39. united against

damaging to                 somebody's saying it

how long have we been saying
you know             somebody going to

in the military going to
these are not military guys  

scathing. scathing. enough is enough

hold him for trial         may justice be brung
one under the law and in the courts

stop our brave        lose lips
see the gravity instead of fun

not guaranteed

15 August 2012

40. i dare not meet in dreams

Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow
                                       For Thine is the Kingdom

Between the conception
And the creation
Between the emotion
And the response
Falls the Shadow
                                       Life is very long

Between the desire
And the spasm
Between the potency
And the existence
Between the essence
And the descent
Falls the Shadow
                                      For Thine is the Kingdom

For Thine is
Life is
For Thine is the

13 August 2012

12 August 2012

43. rots in bookshelves

uploading is a simulation of death
what has survived is immortality
the idea
the atomization of the self

there are several stories
some of which are aesthetically potent
shared bodily sacrifice
incapable of conceiving history

the name creates and sustains boundaries
towns like scabs
on the land's broken skin
peroxide tendrils' gaudy fire

return to a place that no longer exists
we are stuck in place
the city fluctuates around us
smelling alkaline from the pitch

11 August 2012

44. regret

My first                   and my first
This was basically just a test, or practice, and
I'm a big fan of overkill.

all the onion skinning
      would have had color,
i was too damn lazy

people should rate your flash
according to how good it is.
funny how things turn out.

Random violence, a suicidal
mass-murderer, blame the media after.
must be the 21st Century.

God bless America.

10 August 2012

45. like memnon (g sonnet)

nothing is wrong but darling
something's hesitating
so far so like your dreams tonight
nothing will help us
for one day sons of sound
and sons of sound
i can't stand your lips
your scalding face and a second blow

the cross fades
the heroine dies

08 August 2012

47. 57 down on your old strophes

if anybody          if anybody cares
this is     showing the video is

this is     not him

these videos     they distort him
he was meek     he was quiet

this is
    cut the pictures out
        do not let your children see it
            take them out of the room

his agenda         unedited
    he wasn't

I promise you they watched 'Natural Born Killers'
I know
I examine
                       these people
I've examined

You cannot saturate the American public with this kind of message

they        they
This is perversion.

We have to send a message.

you hate     you're paranoid
you're depressed         you're sad

a weak link

We have to stop giving

06 August 2012

49. of the great white

phosphorescent cacophony of crows
circling the roadside
something dead spits idle notions

life curdles richly through an upper jaw
good fortune to leave one tooth hanging
honor in beak-tied shreds

i am not an object lesson for your eight-year-old
empty grin that never lost a vote

bones hear the Word
let me secret you a whisper
look between these two clawhammer branches just so and

05 August 2012

50. cross road blues

The car is on fire
and there's no driver at the wheel
and the sewers are all muddied 
with a thousand lonely suicides
and a dark wind blows. 

The government is corrupt
and we're on so many drugs
with the radio on and the curtains drawn. 

We're trapped in the belly 
of this horrible machine
and the machine is bleeding to death. 

The sun has fallen down
and the billboards are all leering
and the flags are all dead 
at the top of their poles. 

It went like this: 

The buildings tumbled in on themselves.
Mothers clutching babies 
picked through the rubble
and pulled out their hair. 

The skyline was beautiful on fire,
all twisted metal stretching upwards,
everything washed in a thin orange haze.

I said, 
kiss me, you're beautiful -
these are truly the last days.

You grabbed my hand 
and we fell into it
like a daydream 
or a fever.

We woke up one morning 
and fell a little further down.
For sure it's the valley of death.

I open up my wallet
and it's full of blood.

04 August 2012

51. /d/ ends with c stutter (f sonnet)

culling enough from it to construct moments of order
with fenster shot, the blacks are going to be all over Jackson

you, constancy and exegesis, were found very loose
some even without ulcers - who've said practically

in Europe were leprosaria, deserted all over
there aren't any mental hospitals in Bellona anymore

this place isn't going to be here tomorrow
that's all right

pulled the hands down from the clock
the burning city squatted on weak, inverted images of its fires

the luminous light shapes that flanked me and threw pastel shadows
wrote some more, only they came and burned them all up

  this is a pretty vicious looking thing
  I have come to

03 August 2012

52. tribe

go to mongolia some day
start in south at great wall
tramp north across gobi desert

stop beside turquoise waters of lake telmen
chant mantra and sing sutra for soul of long-lost
meditate on duality of all things

taking off again
spend rest of short life in great daa kure

first things first

01 August 2012

54. last wandering

the time fixed for his insane enterprise
men sentenced to death sleep very soundly

the terrible sensation of sudden solitude
how his action must have appeared to him

if it's not uncivil to ask
habitual serenity and friendliness

with a certain solemnity
having said all that was prescribed by politeness

n'en parlons plus parce que cela me fait mal
ceased speaking with strange suddenness