Aught, no. 8 (2002)

Raymond Farr

Smudge/Stone As Dialectic


Amplify voice,please. (The tone is the range/the distance traveled
like the unforgotten/the dead rupture of ambiguous intents.)

No rubber-necking past Liz at Cleveland Heights.
That, at least, must be obvious as our      voice/as it is told: the moan/the moon
                                                        of everlasting desire/voice of a stone.


Wholesome as beauty makes us feel,
it's a trap like any, ready to spring.
Hold psychosis in your arms & you'll know that I'm right.
Let "happen" slip off.
Grip "the real" like a gold coin/cradle it & the recluse & the shadow.


A smudge of shore-sand/a width of finely ground coral.
The ephemeral/the gleam of the real/the concise word.
The manifest/the substance of nightmares & dreams.
Our own survival/condemnation: we are stone. We live!



in the mouth of           in the eye
in the snarl of             is the tale
A myth fallen
like despair                 The poet as fool/
over everything!          the poet as king!

When the man, half-human, half-lupine, decided.
When the wolf, half-lupine, half-human, acquiesced.
We thought them enlightened:
                                 in a handful of sand a moment
                                 in a bagful of apples: nourishment
                                 in a house troubled by nightmares: the next day
                                 in a town that is our destiny: a new road
                                 in the graves of our sons: an old suit.

The myth we portend
raises its voice above all the others:

"Fire! Fire!"
"The imagined slopes burn as we descend them!"

But our fear was real! The fear was real!


Snoring while shaving.
Singing while walking the dog.
What? Corpses. Myriads of them.
Who? You with your vague understanding, your disciplined neglect.
Someone somewhere who doesn't know.
Who sits by himself or herself expecting shining, expecting whims.
They are what they are waiting for:
a slight ashen pallor,
or fire in their inconsolable moment.
The charm is equivalent.
When you no longer see them with your eyes
they become inevitable, immortal.
Ask yourself, as you watch them approach out of nowhere,
out of your own imagination:
What is this apparition?
Lay down in the hometown grass, you/me him/her,
and say something uproarious,
say something beautiful I'll remember till I die.



Voluntary/involuntary phenomenon: extinction, process leading out of

chain(bio(molecular) profundity) expression there (of) being creation: life itself.

Reaction to light: part of the process. (I)(We) bio-impactive.
Response to stimuli: (I)(We) eco-reactive.

Opossum: raiding trash cans on

the great (meaning vast) land.
& competent (meaning I have survived for millenia (as a roach/mosquito)
in this rotting log/this open water.)

In the event of pyroclastic flow.
Should the pyroclastic flow reach the sea (as it should/as it has forever):
regard the smoke: it will cover your eyes.
Regard the ash (airborne). Regard the fire (both spiritual & physical)
                       distinctions identify sense here (but) overwhelmed by sense.
Regard the lava: myth of the earth shaping & forming: sulfur, sulfonimides, sulfuric.
"The deceased stopped breathing." "They were overwhelmed."
"They sat up in bed, fearing extinction." "They said What is happening to us?"
"It was over in seconds."

Omit: rational.
Insert (include): uncertainty in the holy plot (in the (bio)holy plot.)

in relation to gymnosperm in relation to angiosperm in relation to marsupial
having knowledge of didactic texts having knowledge of polemic discourse

"All we want," shouted the masses, "is a place we haven't touched yet."

Copyright 2002, by the author. All rights reserved.
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