The song the sirens did not allow

Odysseus to hear . . . and what it was

He thought he heard --

Kafka never heard it either

But it sounded like this


1) A disassembeled state

2) With no idea what to do first

3) With no idea what to do next

4) Using numbered series instead


No allegiance no charm

Every idea and every other idea

Never quite hearing what you think you said

Not loss but a not yet newly defined shape

The rain extends all the way up the coast

With snow in the higher elevations


Accuracy sustained by continuing memories of the verbal character

Genius and the colorful fastidiousness of the conditioned responses they conjured --

Assertions of dialect often misheard

Further dimensionalized by the acoustics

Remembered and imagined in the rooms of the house

Where the words were first and then repeatedly heard

Through shifting contexts sustained by humor, rancor, fear of rumor, and disdain


Polemos panton pater


Calabrian tyros & arrivistes [1904]



What you would be led to believe

Is the province of a specific otherness

Compliments made in the grey scale

Possessing nothing of the alluvial --

A barely asserted inflection of sound

Around a vowel or across a consonant

That can initiate an argument that continues for months

Sustained by minutia

Sustained by a beleaguered sense of loss

Sustained by the simple act of imagined likeness

An intuitive recollection understood on the tongue of another

With no loss of expectation

Immigrant antagonisms

Even the dog begins to understand


For a socialized awakening

Nothing more than an array in movement

Neurological and futile --

Traces unlocked in none of the best places

Afford the best grain along which to cut


The measure

Is knowing how to follow through

In an epoch of apology

Pitching to the indifference that comes

From the resolution that remains unspoken


Elizabeth: What are you thinking about?

Ray: Specifics.


The organization of information

And its conveyance

How long will they consider something so broken apart?

How long will it remain a portion of something much larger?


He regards the books he writes as a service

To those who have misplaced his address

A wheel patched with a shoe


Finally he speaks on his own

Still defined by the writer assumed on both sides of the versions

A station in the present

Where did he find them?

He won't say


A work whose expression does not reveal it accommodations

But is discrete enough to enact


The leftover amounts that represent nothing left over

As conjured within the selfsame model --

Not a mere substantiation of loss


The advantage of their company and assistance

Was a matter of great apprehension

Deriving a poor consolation from the reflection

That it may become necessary to avail himself of both

The waiting filled with a shrewd decorum

Deceptively comic


Marginalia forever unfamiliar

Though readily heard

We know you are there

We were anticipating your arrival


Conrad: But the wilderness had found him out early, and

had taken on him a terrible vengeance for the fantastic invasion.

Richard Francis Burton: The alternations of damp and heat

and wet and cold, the useless fatigue of walking, the sorry labour

of waiting . . . the exposure to sun and dew, and last, but not

least, the morbific influences, the wear and tear of mind at

the prospect of imminent failure . . .


Contexts and the assessment of standards of risk

What's chemical?

And what's criminal?


You get a desk and chair

A pot of ink a pen and a pile of paper

You don't have a boss

It's not a bank job


An immigrant's code of values

Shaped by privacies

Quiet attends any discussion

Of the potential for loss

The silence of loss

The most intense



Demonized and terrifying

What else remains

To be discussed?


More rarified than declare would allow

The answer is more mysterious than predictive


The one on the wall beneath the O

This one across the floor along the R

DECEMBER 18 -- DECEMBER 21 || Index