Jayson Iwen


don't wanna be caught barefoot     
when wild dogs begin to bark

as fast as flesh allows
it sprouts oh i wish
below geographies murmur
we began our familiar descent

when the plane goes down
when we finally say goodbye

if i plant the word if
i could speak to my brother
in our own dead language
once he was silent for a month     

and broke it with god damn




I've been "gone" for years. At this point I was over the Atlantic, nervous and guilty, feeling like I'd abandoned my land and family. And my time had come. And for what? Some inscrutable impulse? To find the perimeter of my self? Thinking this and trying to think it through Syro-Lebanese proverbs. Because I was looking for the language lessons one learns before one knows it. Before one's consciously socialized. Trying to "piece it together." Each poem in this series is at least three – right column, left column, and together – forwards and backwards. The phrase is the fundamental unit. An utterance.