I recently filled another notebook, a year-and-a-half of dreams, thoughts, poems. Here’s a few of those still-being-edited poems that I read in April at the High Wire series and at the Four Minutes to Midnight launch of f.a. nettelbeck’s last book.

Discipline! From now until then. Dregs of training trail after everything I do, all that I am, frail human clay molded to fit this world. These strings of letters, letters strung into words, words into phrases, into poems, stories, instructions, exhortations, essays, anonymous obscenities. I was taught to speak, taught to write, taught to see the shared fantasies and illusions that make up social ‘reality’; all along I think I’ve secretly desired no more than to somehow impossibly recover my own earliest perceptions, before language imposed its own ‘view’ what did a clover look like? A blade of grass? A stone? Whole catalogues of sensation compiled by the wobbly baby head, hands, feet, skin, hair, elbows, nostrils, ears, eyes. The immediate – reality. All else like an expanding invisible bubble taking in neighbourhood, city, nation, planet, solary system, Rand McNally galaxy, the conceptual impossible (really) universe. Always secretly suspecting somewhere a fundamental mistake was made. Somewhere in the superstructures of thought, the underlying bedrock of belief, of our shared ‘truths’. Perhaps someone lied, perhaps we lie to ourselves. Some flawed foundation stone, such that everything, the whole human project is cursed. Is it the way we string these words together? See those stars in the sky? Perfect, horrid zeitgeist, rotting from within. Think we grasp something, some situation, only to see it turn and alter instantly, like a kaleidoscope, like a universe seen from a reverse perspective. Confusion, fear, paranoia, until we return to the source, to a vast, heaving ocean under dark skies, and stand there with another, one who could be loved. Wordless.

– 2 Nov 09 –

Failure to be ‘part of’ some great blob entity. Musicality lacking in the clamour clank of the T-34 Tank mode of persuasion. Clap of a flat iron mine to its thick armour rind, if force is the way this beast sways, then some stray force can counter in a pinch. The universe seeks balance, harmony, not massification and brute power.

The body has forgotten its optimal state – poised, relaxed, alert, lithe, alive, in motion or at rest. It meets an immovable object, it compresses, it strains, it buckles, it bends. Avoids what it cannot oppose.

One finds oneself attempting something with language, but maybe language is stymied by sheer stupidity, by incomprehension, by animal appetites ruling simple social structures – greed, for instance. A community united in greed. (English, for instance – a greedy language.)

Ways and means, ways and means, ways and means, ways and means.

– 12 Nov 09 –

What is this great inner glow?
I am like a body-bulb
Lit by an amber filament
That dispells the clatter of
Anxieties and random thoughts
In a special spectral spacial light

Winter cold,
Some fears as to nothing
Nothing adhering to somethings
I can divine that I’m already so
Fearful of so much and so many
One more is nothing or
One more is
The tipping point …

Set off, and soothed by so little
Mothers know, with their pacifiers and rattles
Our frail baby grip on things
Surprisingly strong and yet feather light
And our trust, absurd and equally endearing

The Shakespear in me
The delight with hifalutin DeQuincey-isms
And well-turned phrases and
A subtle show of ankles amidst
Snowy lace petticoats

Just being around someone smart
Can make one feel smart

After all, mind must imply structure
And all the rigidities, inflexibilities
All the channels, circuits, networks
Necessary for the free and easy flow
Of ideas

The infrastructure of intellect
Schools and schools of thought
As layered as old abandoned wiring
Of ancient Plateau apartments
The exposed bones of antiquity

But this ‘inner light’ experienced as real
Real as somatic interiority ie. ‘Feelings’
This is new, seems new to me
As opposed to the old stale thoughts
That often rob me of my rest

– ? Dec 09 –

The body gestures of fine-boned poets
The confusion of the young
Sharp glances and sudden discussions

But really it is the breath of hope
Like spring’s stealthy advances
Those new fresh green buds now leafing up
In trees all over these city streets

The unlikeliest of faces
Similarly glowing and opening up, receptive

It’s memory, memory of love or loves
How my love just poured, in torrents,
In jets like a slashed jugular
It’s been so long since I’ve even had
The faculty of shining my love light around
And now I’m remembering
How much I really loved
So many people
And in a way, so unconditionally
In exactly the way I always wanted to be loved

I guess it might have been
Seeing those violet eyes once again
And remembering
Our younger selves
In the gaze that flowed
Back and forth between us

And in remembering this
I want to bring this visioning
This spotlight love
To bear
On present days and nights

– 21 Apr 10 –

Repair of self thru young fan base
Old weird grudges and complaints
Trickle thru recordings
Sleep ebb and flow
Word pair spare flair
I want the pale moonlight of
Her regard
Uncensored nothings whispered by
Unconscious lips near sleeping ears
Care of the self, share of the shelf
Sexy danskin and playing with hair
Eye make-up and little black stockings
Poise of mind like a lightly held dagger
Long craggy face framed in fur
Voice of experience, thickened and husky
Boys poised in noble thought
Ironic, Byronic, catch of the throat
Dusk faun positioned at edge of wood

Sometimes consciousness ebbs –
Sometimes flows.

– 16 Dec 10 –

Like shelves collapsing
Order subject to gravity yields chaos
Debris piled at the foot of a wall
So goes the world
With nothing to keep it alive
Without love, without food and water
Without light, without air

My ears drink birdsong like a mouth sips water
The sparrows congregate in the naked bushes
They dart in the alley, in squadrons they fly
They hush at my step
Great conclave
Holds its breath

Never mind me
With my errands
My “where mushrooms? where rice?”
The sky persists in its beauty
Beyond clutter, beyond collapse
The subtlest shift in light, colour
Clouds lower in downtown
Angelic light leaks through
And blue, a hole to the north
Blue, with chimney smudges south
Friendly grocery clerk
As close as I come to human contact

– 4 Jan 11 –

The viral load – just a mild bug
Blown up city-size by the moral indifference
Of newsprint
Daily exhortations to murder and rape
In easy-to-read comic form
Invisible to a stunned and degraded populace
Who’ve had, after all, their fill and more
Of murder, mass murder, rape, mass rape, war

Weary battalions
Saints, marching still in ragged formations
Of hope, that blue-eyed bitch
She of the iron-seeming resolve and
Enormous appetite for sex and booze
Calling for change, calling for movement
Raising the dead, healing the sick
Confronting indifference with her
Glorious dreams

Is it always to be this mad black-and-white wheel
Spinning, blurring my sense of self
Lost between some impossible ideal
And the truly lost chaos of hopelessness?
I’m a wreck, here, riding this whirlpool
Called ‘daily existence’
Staring into a pit, or else
Watching the distant unattainable stars spin.

– 3 Mar 10 –

What a baddish, deathish February.

Who steps into the
Power hole
The huzzing buzzing swimming hole of power
To bathe in money and fuck the consequences
To cleave to a dubious flow?
It seems like life
I mean it simulates a source of life
Yet it’s the very opposite in its
Shrivelled results
Still its adherents dangle before me
Like ripe fall berries or
The translucent, pendulous abdomens
Of mosquitoes gorged on blood
They soak up the resources
They march in lockstep with its ‘logic’
Make plans, fly places, do important things
I guess it’s normal
But I keep seeing it all against a backdrop
Of things ending
Of a finality
Am I just crazy?
Or do I continue to trust my feeling
My overall sense of impending disaster?
As I sit in February dark insomnia thinking
I feel like
I really am alone, and lost
In the midst of an ever increasingly lifeless
Frenzy of hopeless routine
Presided over by desperate drones
Who’ve long since stopped questioning
The sense of wisdom of their own actions.
I’ve found for myself
A little pocket of resistance
A flower, a blossom of vitality, of hope
And I feed it, I nurture it
With what fuel I can spare
Praying that this hopeful glow
Might catch, might ignite all the
Dry, desperate deadwood of this night
Bring on a new day.

– 11 Feb 10 –

The cacophony of life symphony segueing into
Sympatico and sinfonia without only a bonely
Da da da

Musical ear drowning in near beer but
Molly will hatchet that check on the
Mahogany table top smartly, heartly

Trundle bundle mangle bangle unrue spunrue
(I rue the day I rue the day I rue the day)
Pull on a pullover and hang up a hang out
Out on the hang sen sen

Like a runaway Joan Jett sneaker class
Peasant last hearing voices making choices
Lesley surfboard scuba suit Nova Scotia

Tumble rundle waves Atlantic waves, and
They’re some cold baby

Awfully awesome awe some awful full of
Awe some full some some some full full fullsome
Awesome fully full full

Like a contract like a legal document like
Like a codicile like like like a binding
Agreement like arbitration like a big
Deal in turnaround like like like

You call this writing? You call this writing? You call this writing? A table full of activists, activities late at night, food and drink and long conversations, yes I call this writing.

– 9 Feb 10 –


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