not saying you split the parents
YOU SAY CHEATING
eating? i say
oh i say
it was taken after new years you say
i noticed them too i say
they are diamonds you say
you hang up
i unparallel park
open trunk take out red can
do you have any cigs i say
yes i say flinging the cig onto mattress
i walk inside then the cat
the photograph image is
the earrings have spheres too small to be pearl
To You Who Appear in DIAGRAM:
When growing despondent at what my ambition plans and my skills obliterate, I turn to the letters, the book reviews, prefaces, postscripts, and other such minutae of writers I admire. I do this frequently. I reread Jack Spicer's Admonitions several times in preparation to write this note. My efforts are insignificant beside the enormity of the tasks I have assigned myself. As I mature, I become increasingly aware of the vanishingly small possibility of success in grand endeavors, and more cognizant that my current sacrifices may not make any difference.
I open my window. The air is warm and humid, and although I cannot see the lake from here, I imagine that there is a small crowd gathered on the white shore, splashing water, wearing sandals and brightly colored bathing suits; Frisbees and kites dot the landscape. Trite, yes, and why not be there? Get out of this stuffy room. I begin to look for what is easy, what will cut my losses to a minimum and allow me to save face, avoid genuine failure, avoid even the simple failure of the clichéd description of the beach. Then I read the correspondences, the notes, the peripheral words of those whose writing I love and I am shocked by the courage and endurance they display by remaining attentive; these people do not flinch or seek escape when faced with difficulty that threatens to envelope them. The above poems may be failures, but they are failures worth having.
Commenting on poetry, like the exercise of torture, is hazardous to the individual engaged in the practice and to victims of such. From both torture and criticism the object of inspection usually ends up worse off. The poet risks believing his (forgive the pronoun) explanations and after-the-fact logics that appear more purposeful and definite than they are, and the readers risk being duped to follow the author's example.