Event

poems: april 1 - 24, 2019

Brooklyn, NY

Event 1

nighttime, walking around old town


we’re losing you, see

you decided to go off on your own

and finding your way without any help

and look at where you are now


the american goes into a world and has an experience

somehow trembling with magnificence and awe

an opinion, perhaps

shining with subjectivity


forgetting their subject is less of an I

and more of a fragment, occasionally making sense


going forward, headlong-blind

into the shining shit with wild abandon


who are your neighbors? 

have you forgotten?


inside, disorganized

in through: 


struggling under the yellowish light

in the twilight of your assuredness


no grounding

headless and frozen

Event 2

black, abstraction, glacial movement

 

some animated exchange of forces

an indecision or two

inadequate means to complete

—not potential, but present

lacking in community, sometimes but not always

having to wipe the countertop once again

 

considering the circle, the sphere, the torus:

—what is their presence?

—what does one see traveling along their surface?

—what is hidden and what is revealed?

 

we were hiding from the wind in a cafe on the clark street side of the square

i was hiding from the boss at the dunkin donuts across the street from the shop

we were hiding from punctuality in the bakery near the train station

i was listening to the water through the cellar door with the storm outside

they were wishing for time to not be measured

traveling through the day—on the clock

reveries of movement

changing through the seasons

time of the body

the worn gears of capital, finally settling

breath returning to the body

 

i will remember there

spacious, the hole of the wheel

 

light, we exit

 

Event 3

dust, red sun, evening in a parallel world (in response to Cosimo Pori’s reflection on The Vessel)

 

1.

wrong elevator: took me to the second floor

—could not take me to the first, interestingly

a stranger joined me

elevator—again—took us to the wrong floor

 

i tried to get to the right platform later that night, but couldn’t navigate

it is almost like it was designed to be illogical

one side without access to the other

the other complex beyond necessity

 

before the doors open in the morning—

 

a public without access to essential services

in the middle of the city park taking a shit in the bush

another in line at the emergency room door, perhaps

‘make em wait’

 

the subway, once again, delayed

tracks on fire

 

have to move, again

—landlord

 

then, around the corner—closer than one’d think

searching for crumbs outside of the restaurant

huddling away from the wind

 

off the street

on the other side of the door:

the steak is too dry

a hair in the pasta

wrong drink

 

2.

i was born on the date september fourteenth nineteen-ninety-four

and nonetheless some people were also born on that day

—before and after, in fact—

and today as i am writing this people still continue to be born and what not

 

and in placing faith in science and reason

—which we all must do—

the world we live on will die someday

subsumed into the broader collapse of an unstable, fragmented universe

this is simply—with our current knowledge—not a matter of belief

—it is a truth as far as current reason is concerned

 

as for civilization:

this is a wholly different matter

 

when i woke up when i was born

i joined everyone else here

eating, shitting, and sleeping

i learned history

listened to my parents

didn’t go on vacation

made some friends

 

we are responsible for what we do in the end—

not we as a bunch of “I’s”

but we as the one and final “we”

 

3.

ownership is not a natural condition

valuable is not beautiful

individuality is not freedom

popularity is not community

spectacle is not progress

 

not to say progress is illusory—

we have certain responsibilities to each other, after all

despite who says otherwise—

 

when climbing those many stairs

through our days

into that final sunset overlooking the water

we will all decide—together

if we want to charge admission or not

Event 4

mineral point wisconsin, arlington wisconsin, cassville wisconsin


returning there half awake in the backseat of grandma’s oldsmobile 

up the rolling incline of the downtown

quaint and oldworldly—like an english high street

the town a small dot astride the driftless hills


ten years later, still in winter

driving to arlington in dad’s truck

out to the prairie, past the hills


alone in the chapel

upstairs in the loft

softly snowing

inside, sounding:


quintaton 8’

gemshorn 8’

mixtur v


then


falling asleep—finally—early in the morning after a long rehearsal

after having to transfer across town because of track maintenance 

thinking to myself of what is next

feeling the gravity of the city

where going five miles feels like an eternity

remembering how things felt as a passenger

seeing through the right hand window

on the way to grandma’s house

winding our way down to the riverside village

beyond the bluffs, into the coulee

driving past the swimming pool

seeing the power station lit in the distance

through her porch, wicker-scented

saying goodnight, the sound of a train

Event 6

the magnet, dark hall

 

seen through a crack in a dream

beckoning from another world

crying from across that expanse...

 

we walked the street corners like everyone else—

ordering a soft drink at the counter

warmest summer afternoon in a year

sleeping above the shops

a flash in that corner of the sky

an unobserved mind

the empty room

 

they worked tirelessly—

pulling the fire through the ether

—not once sensing the energy

this brazen pursuit

the seismographic consequence

 

maybe we’ll all wake—

i’ll find you in the corner booth

sitting on the naugahyde with the peeling brass

eggs and toast in front

nothing outside for miles

two vectors meeting at a point

finally, a rip in the world we know

 

finally, the silence of life affirmed

Event 8

grounding

 

now is the time

here is the place

 

don't forget to bring

everything you had to remember

Event 10

chrysanthemum

it was the dust from the porch

chrysanthemum under the sprinklers

greenest grass, across the road

bluffs above the houses

treeless street with cracked sidewalks

 

the park flooded and grandma showed me the pictures

 

i live next to a different river now

still grey in the month of april

upstream from the city

the smell of dirt and a cool wind

the sound of bells across the valley

 

soon i too will be filling sandbags to halt the river

Event 12

voltage

—poppy seeds. she lays there, sullen and sick of the warmth.

a breeze bringing the scent of the sawmill—never mind the noise…

oh, that racket was hard to ignore. i asked—with a definitive tone, of course—

what might be bothering her. she let the wind speak for itself. we walked down

the quay later that evening, when the cedar in the air was replaced by salt.

where begin, where end. i awoke in the back seat of the station wagon on the

way back inland through the hills. i glanced across the darkness to see a dim

barn light—reminding me of viewing the substation outside of the cafe—the hum

that was difficult to ignore when it was late and the patrons had gone home. and

yet, my vigilance would be short lasted and like the morning of my old age i was

no longer fixed to the grounding—no longer among the crowds contesting the image of god

—and yet between youth and bedtime i feel the cold wind every once and awhile

 

he came to the end of the trail, out on the far reaches of the prairie late in the evening. a stranger in this place, he followed the hedgerow of scrub until he came upon a light hanging

far in the distance spanning a gate to the pasture. he looks around the treeless expanse

looking for the portal, turns to the sky, and walks through the gate. what seems like hours, yet the moon hangs in its position still, the rough path giving way to open grass, untrampled by the feet of others—fresh in its newness, purplish in the moonlight. the land between him and his long abandoned truck, the land between his truck and his long abandoned home—how much further must one persist? and in the disappearance of time, the moon skewered above

unmoving, the footfalls on the rolling silent hills, growing tired. a warmth and then a low

buzz. vibration in the lungs moving to the crown. the sun, a light, is rising. eyes blind,

somehow. the mine is collapsing—the workers safe at home. just me now. the moon has

disappeared. a swirling hole in the sky. teeth smiling lie beyond. over the plains. cold. singing a forgotten song. a spark lighting my cornea. waves of gravity. no more space. the purest no.

 

loveliness, only seen for a moment barely awake—in the vapor of a fleeting mathematics.

under the blanket in january, clouds of rosemary bubbling, sleet on the wooden siding. she calls from the neighboring room. another world, yet. another pasture, yet.

Event 14

adoro te devote

 

a whisper in the dark

heard from nowhere

out in the desert

a voice immaterial

beyond the memories

between all places

without time

without mass

a truth unconditional

 

walking down the block, rain

pouring down our backs, on the

way home from work

mother in the den, waiting for the pot roast

dust from my boots finally shed, later

close my eyes with a gentle smile

 

we will all work together

finally, as neighbors

we will look across the wall--

another world growing silently

ask yourself when you are on the precipice:

will you be the gardener?