June 22, 2007

open up your hands
and let me see
the things you keep in there



Stephen E. Lewis, 2002


Satellite of Love
-- by John Forbes

like unwound toys or the mind of a stone
verbs elude me. I’m willing to change tho’

— if you do too — into a spree or a better
more feeling computer. oh tent of dreams!

where is your tailored lightsail guiding us?
through what used to be the empyrean, but now

is just where satellites go, to stamp like
a giant foot, infotainment & game shows

into the brains beneath? death by stellar
allure or a lack of oxygen might follow,

unless this prayer can save me, the way
damaged glamour seeks out its opposite number

& we move together, draped in the planet’s
tingling aurora, thanks to our huge,
electric shoes.


Speed, a Pastoral
-- by John Forbes

it’s fun to take speed
& stay up all night
not writing those reams of poetry
just thinking about is bad for you
— instead your feelings

follow your career down the drain
& find they like it there
among an anthology of fine ideas, bound together
by a chemical in your blood
that lets you stare the TV in its vacant face
& cheer, consuming yourself like a mortgage
& when Keats comes to dine, or Flaubert,
you can answer their purities
with your own less negative ones — for example
you know Dransfield’s line, that once you become a junkie
you’ll never want to be anything else?

well, I think he died too soon,
as if he thought drugs were an old-fashioned teacher
& he was the teacher’s pet, who just put up his hand
& said quietly, ‘Sir, sir’
& heroin let him leave the room.


Le Signe (Cygne)
-- by Veronica Forrest-Thomson

Godard, the anthropological swan
floats on the Cam when day is done.
Levi-Strauss stands on a bridge and calls:
Birds love freedom; they build themselves homes;
They often engage in human relations.
Come Godard, come, here, Godard, here. The halls
of Clare and Trinity, John’s and Queens’
echo the sound with scraping of chairs
and cramming of maws. A red-gowned don
floats by the swan. We must try to explain
to the posturing dancers that this is an image
of human existence; this is the barre-work
of verbal behaviour; this knife in the corpse
that they shove through a window to float
down the Cam when day is done
is Godard, the anthropological swan.


Ill-Made Almighty
-- by Heather McHugh

"No man has more assurance than a bad poet." -- Martial

The logos thrives, it is crawling
with bugs. The lecturers, below,

are memorific, futurized, dead-certain
they'll go unsurprised. They don't

know nows as you do, true to no
clear destination. (You can't even act

your age, it's over-understudied.) Steady
as you go. The greatest waves are barely

bearable, alive's ill-read already,
and the Skipper is sick of the terribly lit

graffiti in the head.


* EXTRA: DCB has communicated to the SJBB that the new record is shaping up and will be recorded somewhere in Nashville in August so i can be released in the beginning of 2008. He even provides a list of song titles.

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