children kiss us
we are going through dream
– Audre Lorde
I meeked the poem on to a sunspilt
star, and it
growled the purr of it was tinsel
but I granted it
my weasel and
it purred again the burr of my poem
is gone, or
has it? we long for transitive verbs
when we could easily
be content with riddles
We are going through dream
and the children
know which dream to live &
which to slay the
song too knows but words
get in the way –
hoarfrost, iced munitions led
word, by Word – gift of song
rift of Song
by word heard wrath, slept
as the chain
of verbs belonged: they woke
in disarray &
chain, the sweat of their mirrors
unbridled now –
morning as errant song, the gift as mend
as the architecture of mould
this would of
wear & mendicancy! how the strain of rinse
builds fences, how it stains
the oak of pale
an unpried zone, withheld with whose bark?
solitary perhaps with
saturn’s name, which
saturn, you ask? tuneshot with tuesday’s age
unhooked perhaps with
my master’s rage, which
master, you ask?
Two unequals sitting
talking amiably about what it is
that makes one half have and the other not –
this is where imagination cedes ground
to unreason –
so pitch perfect you are in a hurry to call it love
Here is the data visual accompanying the poem (click through if you may):
To enter the poem as flesh as the dream that stuns you –
the owled necessity that sings of the other does the poem
sit in relation to the other as it does to ancient song?
to enter the poem afresh, to return the dream that stuns
owled necessity, the song of the other we who would gather
brambles and speak as if we live forever (which stories
stick to the ground of the poem?) is it wonder sitting at my
throat recalling an earlier witness and becoming known?
to enter the poem again has the eclipse been stone for long?
where do we go to settle our debts once the rags have been
the rope of not-having-been
closes round our
necks? do we stare into an abyssed ball for futures? does the
weight of a grassblade
shake our weeded yet-to-comes?
if through this word is to flow
the unheeded burn of the other’s weight if through this word
is sifted the witch’s
soothe and her meaning, the
howl of burn & stitch of
war if through this word is stone my brother & river my stone
would the calm
of a paper heathen suppress care
suppress her hooded scream?
As I begin to familiarize myself with Silvia Federici’s work on reclaiming the commons and linking witch-hunting with the birth of capitalism, I attempt a playful weaving of some of her very powerful insights into verse.
What was prose?
– It was grandmother’s recipe book spilling devourable esoterica
– It was the poem stung with the immediacy to explain
– It was trying to speak of the spirit of the forest seeking endless play
– It was putting on paper the ensuing death of wonder
– It was the knot at the beginning and unlying of the knotted tie
What is prose?
– It is the pause before verse cuts its teeth on the veracity of the evidence of words
– It is an infought war of erudition between bankers and highbrows
– It is prepost-modern but not prepost-erous enough for armchair whimsy
– It is the wrangling at the tryst of what-happens, when-do-we-know and whatchamacallit
– It is the scramble for the poem, the want of it, the heat of knowing the want.