Month: January 2015

3 Sonnets from 555 by John Lowther

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Lowther for AltPoetics

Note on text: 555 is a collection of sonnets whose construction is database-driven and relies on text analytic software. I crunched and analyzed Shakespeare’s sonnets to arrive at averages for word, syllable and character (inclusive of punctuation but not spaces). These averages (101 words, 129 syllables, 437 characters) became requirements for three groups of sonnets. I collected lines from anywhere and everywhere in the air or in print in a database. The lines are all found, their arrangement is mine. Values for word, syllable and character were recorded. Typos and grammatical oddities were preserved; only initial capitals and a closing period have been added as needed. The selection of lines isn’t rule-driven and inevitably reflects what I read, watch, and listen to, thus incorporating my slurs and my passions as well as what amuses and disturbs me. These sonnets were assembled using nonce patterns or number schemes; by ear, notion, or loose association; by tense, lexis, tone or alliteration. Every sonnet matches its targeted average exactly. Think of Pound’s “dance of the intellect among words” then sub sentences for words—it is amongst these I move. The dance in question traces out a knot (better yet, a gnot) that holds together what might otherwise fly apart. I espouse only the sonnets, not any one line.

Comment on Poetics: Of late I’ve wondered why the poetry produced under the LGBTQIQA-etc umbrella is so markedly averse to experimentalism, to the avant garde legacy, etc. Why it tends toward the middle waters of the mainstream, poetically speaking. Why shouldn’t Alt-sexualities encompassed by and exceeding those four letters find more common ground with Alt-poetries in common resistance to normativities whether theybe of the hetero- or discursive- sort? That which is ostranenie is also queer, or no?

Bio: You can find out about John Lowther’s work at his poetry blog where there are many links to online poubellications and details about a few of his ongoing projects. Or if you prefer the tangible, pick up one of these anthologies The Lattice Inside: An Atlanta Poets Group Anthology (UNO Press, 2012) or Another South: Experimental Writing in the South (U of Alabama, 2003) or wait for Held to the Letter (co-authored with Dana Lisa Young) due from Lavender Ink in 2015.

 

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THAT GUY (STANDING ON BROKEN LEGS) by Jared Schickling

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THAT GUY (STANDING ON BROKEN LEGS)

by

Jared Schickling

 

Dear Dick:

 

if there were power enough to do so

but who believes there is

someone—yes—someone

would use it

apes

a good ape

a bad ape

perhaps human

though probably not

(a poem)

us—where we were

some chief proponent—un elected

(un assailed) assistant

(to the) boss

of nothing special—

already—

a motherboard’s groan

too loud

hears a fan going

the way of heat

I no you do—

 

were there power enough to do so

yet you believe there is

someone—yes—someone

would take it

chance

a chance

the despicable and heinous

practice of printing

practice of printing

torture reports

cuz—cause the many

be many

un shocked

only disgusted—

the transparency and honest

nature found—in such printing

(really made you)

really makes you

shit your pants.

 

but not really.  permanent.  did you think

they were coming—that they’re here—

if there were powers

enough (& I believe

there are)—[redacted

redacted] forced

[redacted]

is like something that would that

could

have been—properly utilized much

to wish for—

 

We’re here—

a documented medical need

 

Poetic Statement: I began this poem learning of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on torture during the transnational American war begun in Iraq and Afghanistan.  It is a test for the poem committing the emotion that would like to see especially those war criminals that look and act like something called us subjected exactly to what they’ve accomplished.  To commit the beauty of stone legs made trunkless and the reality of social order.  Mechanically this was difficult to achieve, if I have at all.  The poem does not bear witness.  The poem is romantic, kissing mere instruments.       

 Bio: Jared Schickling’s recent books include Two Books on the Gas: Above the Shale and Achieved by Kissing (BlazeVOX, 2014), The Paranoid Reader: Essays, 2006-2012 (Furniture Press, 2014), and Prospectus for a Stage (LRL Textile Series, 2013).  He co-edits Delete Press and eccolinguistics.

Terrible Animals by Chris D’Errico

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Terrible Animals

by

Chris D’Errico

Terrible Animals by C.DERRICO

Bio: Chris D’Errico has worked as a short order cook, a doorman, a neon sign-maker’s helper, and an exterminator, among other vocational adventures. Born in Worcester, Massachusetts, he lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, with his wife Tracy, and a small clouder of house cats. For more, visit www.clderrico.com.”

SOURCE TEXT: “A Field Guide To Critical Thinking” by James W. Lett, from the book “The Hundredth Monkey And Other Paradigms of the Paranormal”… Filtered through insomnia  and nervous impulse. Inspired by Salvador Dalí’s description of his paranoiac-critical method: “a spontaneous method of irrational knowledge based on the critical and systematic objectivity of the associations and interpretations of delirious phenomena.”

Lodging by Stephanie Kaylor

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lodging

by 

Stephanie Kaylor

 

the other world rewards me

with memories

blank eternally

as a photograph,

shapes and colors

 

the remnants of their explosion

out of context

 

at land

there was a flock of starlings,

I could not tell you anymore,

 

not even if the creatures,

breathing,

surrounded me again, here,

 

now

I would only see a monochrome

grouping, I would only see

the whole

 

what more could you see

when one of us breaks

 

or cloaks herself in new silks?

the great changeover armed itself

in nothing but the delusion

that you were always master

and these are all your tools

 

far-sighted

I see myself at your side, eye

-to-eye, inside which is still a tincture

of the time before you and I

 

in my eye too

was the house, the glorious

overthrow of the ledger

the markings of our losses

 

I never saw

the inside but as spectator

I knew, with all the windows

leading to all the rooms

that I could house them together

there were no padlocks

here nor a single car

not a telephone wire, a time

or a name or a face misplaced.

 

Poetic Statement: Let me mourn. Let me dream. Let me see you not as how you present yourself to be but how I envisage. Let me write my story, let me turn the pages, let me bridge subject and object with my own brand of ink. It isn’t white ink, ink of life, the glorified rape of the canon, sowing its seed in anyone’s lap. It’s the red ink, the ink that transcends the permanence of the whole thing and rewrites, retells, the nagging voice in the background your history sought to cut out. It’s the ink that seeks not to hide glitches but to bring them to the center light.

 

Bio: Stephanie Kaylor is based in upstate New York where she is completing a MA in Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies. She is also a current MA student at European Graduate school, concentrating in narrative structure and desire. Though her musings are not political in content, she is an ardent supporter of activist causes, including sex workers’ rights and prison abolition.