epidermis


poetry journal


Issue #3, Winter 2008





in this issue

jake berry - mark young - mike basinski - matina stamatakis -
scott macleod - greg evason - jim leftwich - vernon frazer







jake berry


Return : Voice

         Even where I buried
        the hummingbird's ruins
     The rock on its roof turns green
                takes a lung
            and forces a machine song
      silent long enough for the valves
        to swallow their grace.

          Dissemble a breath
           in stark light
              wet philosophy
        come to rust weaving
           Even there, too late
   a morning with its sleep drug metal
           low
          for a hollow reed.




The Labor Camps

deliberately light
in a black scar

a handful
of insects scattering

     What remains of your palm
     after a day moving rocks
     till your eyes go numb

     Neon trapezoids
     torn at right angles
     streaming from the
     backbrain.




An Element of Descent

A secret list
he buried

The petrified hands
 of an orangutan  (our antagonist)
in a polished stone box

It might have been
                      his skull
He was never sure

But for a moment
      every morning
      when a bluebird came
      and tore the lids from his eyes
    he thought he could remember
         a pit in the sky
       where his mother crawled
     and drank the honey
      that seduced her to conceive

It might have been his skull
or a wave of meat
driven by a hammered nerve



Nucleotide

This morning
isotope
shredding
radiant

      self-torturous
      eye vault
      labor

The demons have come to America

            dry and weak
                His grace is a flat stone
                    A cudgel of desert
             when desert repeats
                    in broken weather

            9, (seized under)
                     The old man hovering
                        lime powder belly
                       erasing his mouth

      these
      these
      teeth on a spoke

mark young

ENUMERATIONS 7-12





7.  Notes towards an oncology of the spoken word

    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .


8.

Your USD 888 BONUS!


heat-producing Pro-macedonian night-blind
heart sac Catherine-wheel window tear-pale
steep-to angle reflector whey cure
body garment minced pie voucher check
chance-medley time-barred thorough-ripe
town sickness death damp dip rope
Sayan samoyedic quartz battery imagination-proof
sun-blackened field lark Deneb algedi


YOUR OWN CASINO!


9.

The smile is warm
but artificial. Beaver
lodges are a source of
hats. Ride the lift down
444 floors till you reach
the ceiling. Ring Rupert
Murdoch & remind him
yesterday was Sunday
& tomorrow is the
weekend. Sprinkle
nitrogen-based fertilizer
around the roots of
the cyclotron & water
it in. Watch bloodsports
avidly but then proclaim
to one & all how
cruel & unnatural they
really are. Forget to
turn off the orgone box
but remember to repair
the seismic recorder. It
may be needed later.
Bring in the alpaca.
Whitewash film noir.


10. The Love Song of J. Leroi Shakespeare

As simple an act
               I am dying, Egypt, dying:
as opening the eyes. Merely
               Give me some wine, and let me speak a little.
coming into things by degrees.
               The miserable change now at my end
Morning: some tear is broken
               Lament nor sorrow at; but please your thoughts
on the wooden stairs
               In feeding them with those my former fortunes
of my lady's eyes. Profusions
               Wherein I lived, the greatest prince o' the world,
of green. The leaves. Their
               The noblest; and do now not basely die,
constant prehensions. Like old
               Not cowardly put off my helmet to
junkies on Sheridan Square, eyes
               My countryman,--a Roman by a Roman
cold and round. There is a song
               Valiantly vanquish'd. Now my spirit is going;
Nat Cole sings.This city
               I can no more.
& the intricate disorder
               of the seasons.


11.

memory is a catenary desire a
cantilever neither burns not even

in winter the runways of the airport
are being bombed remnants of

live on CNN smoke fills the window
in the television how can one breathe

where there is smoke there is fever
there is there where is there fever

pitch fibre rich meadow saffrons &
one of each & every kind none

of which are the difference engine
ordinate or coordinate emotional abscissa

unlevel a particle playing field
not even whole potsherd left

gone beyond a point mantissa over
you thought it never endgame would

pterodactyls tear out your eyes
& fuck the sockets vacancy filled

12.

                            I attempted to rise,
                              but was not able
                               to stir: For as
                              I happen'd to lye
                                on my Back, I
                              found my Arms and
                             Legs were strongly
                              fastened on each
                             Side to the Ground;

                             

                             and my Hair, which
                             was long and thick,
                            tied down in the same
                             Manner. I likewise
                            felt several slender
                             Ligatures across my
                            Body, from my Armpits
                            to my Thighs. I could
                           only look upwards; the
                           Sun began to grow hot,
                           and the Light offended
                                  my Eyes.


13.

& on the bus

I have been reading guevara's 'bolivian diary',
day by day, each day more tragic &
everything so fucking inescapable I could not
bring myself to read the last few pages
& reach the one he never wrote.
1974 (2006)






mike basinski


Remember That Distractions Can Be Noise
                           Audience Is Instrument
                                  A Ballet

Possible useful performance items: broom, rags, feather duster, ball, book,
fire hydrant, etc. The performance ensemble of more than five dancers
manipulates the audience as the audience enters the performance space. The
audience is the instrument of the dance. Ensemble members as dancers move
about the space conscious of where other dancers are active. Do not
congregate. Two or more dancers in one location will be charged by other
dances with loitering.  Listen and watch. Maintain distance and solo;
however, do form duets or trios variously. Improvise events and/or
variously utilizes the following moves. Select only to your taste. Repeat
often. The events are in random order and do not dictate a sequence.
Orchestrate and focus. Listen and watch. The ballet concludes when the
entire audience seems to be in place, becomes complacent or leaves.

Photocopy, print or modify this poem and perform variously and often.

POSSIBLE POEMS:

Walk with them

Make eye contact

Invisible coats and hats

Clear the walk way

Check to make sure everything is dry

Dust

Encourage them to sit someplace else

Ask someone a question and after they answer ask them the same question

Ask someone, and then others, what they think is going on

Ask someone, and then others, questions about unrelated things e. g. ever
see tractor puke?

Give them something to do

Ask someone, and then others, to play with themselves

Yell stop

Ask someone, and then others, are you undressed because your clothes are
uncomfortable or too hot or because they itch

Tell someone to not make a big deal out of this

Yell stop

Dance stupidly

Tell someone, and then others, that their mother will soon arrive

Ask someone to tear up rags and to construct a rope because that is the
only way they can escape the poetry

Do you want to_______________?  Be ready to accept yes or no

Hum

Praise someone, and then others, for doing things you like

Check around and see if anyone is playing with themselves. Tell them that
if you suspect that they are playing with themselves that you will scream

When you hear someone scream, scream.

Promise to return

Pace

Be sure you know who you are

Do not argue with them even if you know everything is wrong

Check to see if there are things that frighten them

Speak one on one to someone

Rock

Tell someone that they did a great job feeding themselves breakfast

I'd encourage you to call someone

Thank you for staying in the room

Ask yes and no questions

Speak slowly in a pitch lower than usual

It's time to remove your shoes

Blame them for various things e. g.  it's your fault we are fighting two
wars

Give someone, and then others, a time out for______________.

Tell someone you are the president of a zebra

Tell someone they are safe and that you are taking care of them

Tell a lie

Look at someone and laugh

Look at someone, shake your head and walk away

Pace

Think out loud about reasons you are pacing

Find someone and remain silent

Give dirty looks to those around you

Ask them if they need to go to the bathroom

Do not go out that door

Ask someone if they would touch you

Walk away calmly and then check on them in a few moments

Advance to stage sit and rock and hum


=================


Reproduction


================


Water Music


                                     or
                             Poets Sipping Water
                                     or
                          A Byron Water Performance
               [Written After Swimming From Sestos To Abydos]
                     By Michael Basinski and Lord Byron
Perfomrance notes: poets often sip from bottles or cups of water throughout
their readings. Read and/or perform (do both) the text as written below and
improvise water music throughout in between each word. Suggested
accoutrements: bottled water, cups of water, pitchers of water, vats of
water, towels, buckets of water, a mop, a full bathtub, the sea, bathing
suit(s), water balloons, and lots and lots sponges. Sip, gargle, fill mouth
to overflowing, drool, pour, drink, splash, spill, water after each word,
fill sponges with water and drip water, toss water balloons, toss full
sponges, pray to the rain gods, bathe, swim. For solo or ensemble.
Orchestrate.


If in the month of dark December, Leander, who was nightly wont (What maid
will not the tale remember?) To cross thy stream, broad Hellespont! If,
when the wintry tempest roared, He sped to Hero, nothing loath, And thus of
old thy current poured, Fair Venus! how I pity both! For me, degenerate
modern wretch, Though in the genial month of May, My dripping limbs I
faintly stretch, And think I've done a feat today. But since he crossed the
rapid tide, According to the doubtful story, To woo-and-Lord knows what
beside, And swam for Love, as I for Glory; 'Twere hard to say who fared the
best: Sad mortals! thus the gods still plague you! He lost his labour, I my
jest; For he was drowned, and I've the ague.


matina stamatakis


Drifting Away from Holarchic Code Mechanum 
into a Fantasy of Qubits [for Lanny Quarles]




We did not fill the early eleusinian masteries chatter  dirges  digital 
psalms & huddled  masses  securing  communications  via  quantum  logic 
cryptography     of      single   photons   in    talk-back   when  air 
solidifies                    	understanding        big           bang 
nucleosynthesis 

                       on/off


hello we did not lift the world of its deus ex machina events lost to 
protagonistic artifices: tragedy begets comedic tragedy-- chatter 
away the importance          of poly-mulling "circuit" gods 

we did not come here to laugh like air between the spaces 
of our toes--though it happens  often to share sacred moments
			

			--of deicide--


are you with me, angel in a dream by Euripides?  Did you destroy all
complexities with cosmic mÍchanÍ?


	so there is a hereafter! 
a master puppeteer in the clouds: "Morpheus" conundrums 				
befuddling troposphere[ tympanum plastids carry the highest 
amplitudes of silent quarks, 	audacious quanta] into din & scripture      
operational node, dissected what it means to discombobulate exhausted 
platitudes slowly body's the temple's cryptograph smiling through lens 
slowly the world can believe in its own holarchic human self-construct  
				genome rationale:

i submit to the formidable 
breakdowns in my memory
				i am god[s].



scott macleod


WORMWOOD

1.

the barrier at last, and lassitude
onward the expected train unanswered
intellectually to prolong it, mercilessly
clothed, educated, friendly, pawning bland
near adherence in some peculiar way organic
the screwy thundercloud, morose mini
ducal un petroeuro nell'indipendenza di scrutinio,
the prognosis de deficit in eccedenza

the misplace tragedy touching horne
the latter diver, genus picaresque reason
missed at depth, only seen in absence
lamenting aquanaut kidnaper continent

2.

somehow a sombre euronaut forgotten at first
and then remembered in a remote part, breathing
into the possible turbulence, mushroom syst it
thoroughly in order to rule, rich soil for growth,
system immune and people immune, almost
more than the conventional regret, at least
more bearable, this message no different:
YWHA the thyme-tice idiot cub-ba loop

go retell the flatness whinny, more ominous
than the faint but frequent whistle, sallow lore
although this first phraseology disemboweled
ventriloquism o'er thunderhead in genus flippers

3.

rancid vetch petrodollar Warfare filthiness
books for the journey, conflagration, bitter
cold, almost, and snowfall, as consequence,
untitled, identical, hardy, immune, blithely
and so infallibly certain, lucky first lieute
im wormwood aquanaut YWH musculature,
rich growth for eroticism, the soil, wheelbase,
downy igi /bi sid physiognomy overboard

barbiturate boxer shorts prankster generation
compensates, trade fellowship surpluses,
runway robustness, versatile vice assets
prodigal cliche turmoil, and emigration

4.

spotlessly although some of the superficial
memories, hair and cat shampoo, doggie quism,
imize dollar pull uncertainty possessively,
this immune charisma system admonished
and accompanied by robustness detraction,
by the petrodollar friction of the falling,
a seriousness inclination blanket vehemence
settles everywhere, billows of acetylene siesta

r caveat y, that woodwork Chicken degenerates,
consumed in the era, that nonsmoker lampoon
of divine producers: dollar, backer, lessor wrest
from the pit, not far from unprintable strop

5.

people, wormwood wight of salt radiology
fever, wander, er) over the charred campus
surplus beams, and must be lowered again,
their oil in process of degradation, yellow
nonvoting mummy factotums, thousands
u b: employer, custodian, aquanaut, virgin,
Achilles' Welsh neighbors swirl, and find
their way, albeit only to the circumstances

the remaining, s more primp public sunbathe,
visit love alphabet, have pro bootie excellence.
resplendently humongous forbidding assets,
hemp the vetch in wrest Saudi podium

6.

wormwood as with the labyrinthe spell
unrecognizable articulateness while stories
transmute in electric light, in readiness
on wein downward, find no end from above,
are degraded, continued, ifixion sioed by
the waste-pile, the brick-re buildings rill
saw camouflage a chimney acro televisions
doggedness warm draft blowing from the pit

God Welsh drub day, pord Gilgamec,
a...ugh venture sower infer refulgent cull
a system that dries faster than it breaks
and had, enthral, bourgeois billions

7.

we're as wein being, hothead bivalve
who just spread-eagle the monotonously
ti the manufacture of dense repetitions
and ionist buses from other finished products
wander and  ding agronomist snappis
in startling conversations stricken
through the wrought-iron gate
of cordial organizer foam

W tempter redemption papers
on the prowl again, primitive
boat-sicken streetcar rile rill
and quits were cessity now

8.

Feb. im Enki as if an atlas, an account
into tear entrap dryad, the storm beginning
a difficult journey, dynamically preponderant
night shift in wrest silk podium quotient,
answered the stranger by wars and wreck
ing operations, nefarious nonvoting
investor undersigned bereavement visits,
pri wiener camouflage killing neighbors

Gilgamec, being organizer, accumulated
a certain amount of violence, by God,
uphill, at the door splintering, anvil-shaped,
stranger, the remaining runs empty

9.

torment righteously growing between the rails
at that hour of morning behalf places, laryn -
dilate as they entered, somersault afraid
n his. right 1 angle infrequently sets
well-being basely or some disquieting
wish to know, have logarithm strich a
ffix bi platonic blitz flare-up subdivide
hyperEgypt, accept the old film footage

detail start beat of something, problems
of distribution, a malfunctioning door,
splintering terminology abscond oust codify
double-crosser sioed and dais percussionist

10.

the partial center of the agronomist rejoices
at perfect symmetry, an eggnog-ided idealism
ripple the complexities of our customs, seen
at different altitudes, WHITE, untidy, sacred
camouflage, the (piles of) telephones, more books,
another reproduction, typewriters, photographs,
deplorable uphill esophagi the telephone,
color-blind rickety uncared-for paranoia now or never

saw twelve minutes right subscription evacuated
irresponsibly, riot dire trr shaking or a thought-
pommel he the ochre be bran membrane ajor
deplorabl morpheme overlooking the meadows

11.

pimp drub virgin sanctum cognizance
d perpetuate delightful semen crucifixion
subdiv straightforward hat pollution game
No bimbo pommel: noticeably onic
plus chauvinistic testosterone inconstancy
E-hip-hop telephone: undeserving bailiwick
psychologically eggnog sanctum, BIS
PeRussian Gulf Wat m perpetuat strich

was remark remain feldspar amniocentesis
sour globe, madras nerd rock, thug larynges
both hymen coheren trades sanctum game
foreplay extricates moccasin mango mike

12.

disconnected a guardrail fumigator Orleans,
swirl insolvency been herbal banana pollution
sprung The Nebuntup, penes system overhang
hog-tie several start a mane riot, streets run
full, allusion delectation cognizance potentially
t outdo UN gismo, single-mindedly trump
the hermetically swimming apprentice high five
Nebuntup, toffy Russian sonic organizer pimp

violist shockingly with euros
suitability welcomes astigmatism
phosphorescence commando
teach me X-ray

13.

sa purity hypnotically cuts firepower
discreditable disciplinetions transmigrate
really feral rheumatic futon synopses
hypn surgery scrip resolution multiplicand
tranquilize funereal Bulgarian wayfarer
the oil Niven, the pen Niven, the misused jig
forgotten man mismanagement marmot
poste marked unambiguous regimental NY

ral of anymore dillydally, het horne hairpin
when oxy fluorescent singles bar taster paid
to mesmerize Pluto, outdo NASA hegemony
sudden saddened squalid anomalous mimetic NY

14.

thousands primness, as terms constructor devia
religiously incompetence subsists, meekly int
pub, with comparatively fascist vicious circle
reap-publicanism, despotic pacifism, e-euros
sadist thrift resolution punch this I once
cauldron greens meningitis In August 1971
wayfarer heater rephr horne from afterbirth
evangelistic cadmium soup calls this mes

specific migrant chinstrap deviation
gravity y NA X NA print Center
e plaudit in euros matzo mism
mimic communist rephrase currency

15.

oilskin monkey dillydall impolitely
fame tranquilize inspiration evacuated
midnight breast astigmatism ssibly
2-cc of oilskin pushiness provident
O unimpressed isagree bar ype fame
demotion le-mindedly economies
unavoidable aloof rt gallery revalue
ippopotamus east oost starvation

overstock France clung useless
accede preclude infiltrate lambaste
light poser pri volunteer wiry wink alf
Secret unilateral hydroponics abeam

16.

Haiphong working  advisory brake
chimerical, possibly provident
approbation staves discontinuance
and a half, perils trisect, logarithm
relays seismographic copulation
unimpeachable gymnastic redhead
inexperienced pepperoni Bulg
errant irrationally ide blast

how could foolery shoulder sham
practise professorship, disapprove
academy, delimit blast, weld flannel
scout plaid, survive Hegemony

17.

wobediencho uni NASA chaparral
Hg pad wheelchair slogan anyway
How hi y d, topsy-turvy Tiwas
2-z chair steadiness sibilant, War
annals reproachful incorrigibly
Engdahl's gauze system rabid abeam
roundish fungous clanking obstinacy
organizing particular approbation

The ivory tower declarative c
scholastic steadiness, the idolatry
pill, salon hard, reigns sweetener
s petroeuro sorcerer sit-in

18.

Engdahl's aquatic petroeuro ice
discreditable, gruesomely Philippine
repatriate meningitis at hone risk
stea gas imprudence paragraph
pager traipse uneventful peril
buddy organizing sham gallery
strain four jealously delicious fac
guarantor bleed pocketful fail

accede ledge, main the raq War
belligerence mistook inspiratio
and Race, apportion, flail thet
declarative buddy obstinacy


- - -

greg evason


ROTATING WHIFF

stoned on the real
as it shows meaning
to itself
deep within
the curved space of hope
as blasts of pink neon
eclipse the black and blue eye
of everything and everywhere
as the team becomes one
and one stands alone
on stages
in stages
of mental undress
poised to impart knowledge
what sort of knowledge?
the kind of knowledge
that stays around for awhile
but not forever
the kind of knowledge
that knows when
to step aside
and let new knowledge
onto the spot
and I say
look, Tommy, I know
where you're coming from,
I've been there too
got all the T-shirts
that were available
and as such
my wealth of experience
just like yours
will
when I make something
out of it
help to move
the project forward
what project?
I can see you're mind
wondering
the project
is the project
of all the projects
it's the project
that will ultimately
take us off this planet
and into space
but first we must diddle
daddle doodle dawdle
till all the pine cones
are blue just like your shoe
that has the yin yang
of everything wrapped around
its holier than though attitude
as Burroughs put it
if you're praying in space
you aren't there
so I get up in the morning
it could be 3:00 a.m.
or 3:00 p.m.
or any other time
whatsoever
and the first thing
I do
is take a piss
then I think about her hand
the one with the hole in it
that she could
push a banana through
and I feel a bit queazy
and think
maybe I should take
some gravol
but I decide
I don't want to become
a little man
beneath a table
in a restaurant
screaming about nothing
on the other side of an egg
which is in a paper box
normally used
to hold one's coloured markers
meanwhile
my unique and singular testimony
is received enthusiastically
by the United Nations
in New York
where Yoko Ono
plies her trade
as artist of optimism
in the face
of sometimes overwhelming
doom and dread
and then
at around 6:00 a.m.
and/or
6:00 p.m.
I find myself again
walking around
my long block
which takes
exactly 12 minutes
to walk briskly around
and I do it 3 times
hoping my heart stays
calm and contained
and doesn't again
jump outside of itself
and force me again
to call 911
then when the 36 minutes
has been eaten up
I go back home
and try to remember
at least one of
the deep and profound
thoughts I had
while I was putting one foot
in front of the other foot
as I trudged
up and down
the endless legs
of the woman
scantily clad
on my wall

jim leftwich

FOR


for dem wha int
the acc yea wor

not tho not pro
reg see inf cou

mul asn the mil
chi the and  the


10.02.07




WHO


who toh gro tha
mov req eff the

dir ext pos rar
mot pro rel sle

swe wit sho the
cra int int and

for acc vis the
new roo hav une


10.02.07




OUR


our bur the hun
als cov chi gen

mas ful mor sig
the all chi dic

the mom bea bea
peo tri wor wit

bur mas int cru
cou del new wor


10.02.07




THE


the sho the job
pro mus loc dis

fro cal the whi
gre gar for dem

iss con rav ham
ame urb tal iro

loo tro ham ind
isr tha edi oth


10.02.07




HAS


bla dea ira par
ira unp als tha

fir the bla kil
hav sla ove fac

the ini has has
alt  str oft com

oft app and onc
ase emp che gov


10.02.07

RED


nur emy tic ive
tic ore hoe yds

her ane rds ain
tic htt tly ill

out ame now nng
ans lyl ind ves

ore tcd ral ion
hen ted gee leo

red ple hed red
tst eft own ist


10.03.07





RAQ


raq ase hea ont
ndi hem eye nke

ayr ews old umf
edg cyo ses oze

hes cal eds aqs
ung els hee nde

tys ned res dor
ent ces ani ith


10.04.07





RAQ RAQ


raq raq her gon
ryt ent onl dee

nhe ult ice ted
ess ith tor eid

her aid nin ate
ave ede hoe ldr

ere oot ice ent
ote ich get ing


10.04.07





TER


owd yun ton ate
use ter red fan

ter heel yd ter
red ter nes ast

hem ite ute oas
ann any tis ned

obl lyd nts hes
oar ine ich ter


10.04.07


vernon frazer
Oscillation Gumbo




ASTERISK #19



Edited Jukka-Pekka Kervinen All works copyright by authors Kitee, Finland, 2008