Sunday, January 31, 2016

Felino Soriano, A selection from Fragmented Olio, from Consequences

                                    Liberation of the Flatliners, image by Daniel Y. Harris 

A selection from Fragmented Olio

from Consequences

The way moths
                                unravel shape
            bend to
     unfasten flowers onto the


                       Here there are
                       no wings     no
earth-sized tunnel
                                     only a
moment to plant voice
           onto the grass’ manicured
presentation.  The way the moon whispers
light onto the flesh of the destructed
          left in the memory of the
mirror’s leaving              you
exhale prose, softened from sadness and
the burden of the absence.  You want
to leave but this stillness has iron
you are safe                                  no one else is present
and the
               to this ground is
a mirror holding you—
the mother’s ache drawn
into the trust of your shadow.

Formed less

You hold the form
of light and write
how the warmth
feeds you.  Yesterday
the rain climbed
your spine, the way
the throat opens
to invent closeness with
sustained revelation.  You
cannot find balance, and what
is seen is only distance
that clarifies the body’s
misinformed alignment.  You
open the mouth to ignite
the current senses, and awaken
to what seems darkened—
these memories are gardens
razed by the rudiments of
discarded light, rain.  

The up of undulation

Absent of body the
face of this wave.  The
spray the splaying of
white of blue of alternate
notes of the jazz of morning.

After entering

This flame you hold is
more than light,
warmth.  You write
your name in this dirt
to watch wind use
softened versions of
vanish, hands.  People
cross your voice: you
spell faith into the
circumference of this
space, silence—

they do not bend to hear
you, your tongue as
arrow is too straight
to welcome mishearing.  You
recall that here is where
the death occurred: it
will always occur: everywhere
mourn is the color worn
of thorn against ribs
and pulses where the center
hasn’t a name to preserve
blood and vision.

To awaken to this

     signs lead you
into distance and
varied landscapes—

     the voice of the
     calls to you
from a separate room of your breathing.
This is the shelter to
cover both of your tongues.  Call it

home and the space will
    welcome you, by force
but not violence.  It is natural.  And this
is the shelter for both of your
bodies.  Wander, it is good
for the mouth to open
into the promise of searching.  Listen, the
most musical part of your
language is when praise
lifts the angle of your
throat, and the mouth you
have will only survive if
it follows the philosophy of
stone: become still.

Questions into a trio of portraits

This circle you draw

an earth                  without

Where are the bodies?         Again: there

is no violence

here.                                 The language?     Violence is the corporeal

of the hateful tongue.  


Your breath, the suspire, the
painful registry of sound.  An
agony of thrust     up
from the burn of spark
on the tongue.


You will hear of death, a yesterday
of common structure.  This distance
is already a history, the prose of
it, the face of it, an appositional
mirror of two-headed homes.


In your birth
was the cry one of fear, of cold?  To hear
you is to leap
over the ghost
paused to meet the body of Memory’s
violence.  Then, what is forgotten, but the force            just follow the voice.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Marge Piercy, Five Poems

                                                   Bark of Gossip, image by Daniel Y. Harris

Five Poems by Marge Piercy

Without warning, a door 

In the pit of the night, a door
in my mind opened and my mother
came through, not as she was
in her eighties, no, still vibrant,

flirty, her hair in a braid round
her head black as a pool of ink
wearing a summer dress turquoise
with white daisies, laughing loud

from her belly as never in those
last lonely years bumping around
the Florida house she hated without
women friends, just my father

to belittle and grump at her. How
vibrating with strength and energy
before disdain and lacklove wore her
to a fading nubbin of loose flesh.

How much can any woman endure
before she lets hope flitter off?
Before she watches death coming
and smiles as she used to, decades

before when she saw a handsome
man –he had to be handsome –
making eye contact and she knew
she could have him if she chose.

Hairy nocturne

Come to bed as rain
crawls over the roof
fingers the windows.

Night is thick
as couch stuffing.
It thrusts our eyes full.

Neighbors have gone south
with robins and humming
birds.  Foxes: our neighbors

this winter and coywolves,
great horned owls
fisher cats, predators

all whose supper we
hear scream.  Come 
to bed, pull the quilt

up over our warm
bodies and knit them
together, a silken

blanket of answered
wishes.  We too eat
flesh.  The fox no

longer fears us but
prances past, playing
with a dead mouse.

Let us blend into night
all of us– one large
heat seeking missile.

A profitable undeath

In previous times, people said
you went to hospital to die.  Now
near the end you are kept a zombie
helplessly undead against your will.

Tubes stuck here and there
penetrate your soft issues
and every tender orifice. 
Machines breathe and digest.

All the while the bills grow
like tumors.  Doctors forbid you
to give your body back so you
can finally, finally let go.

Epirus, decades ago

   for Anastasia with whom I spoke Greek after too long

I remember the magpies natty
in black and white under the gnarled
twisty trunks and matte grey leaves
of old olive trees.

Fallen olives lay in the grass
beneath like the shiny black backs
of beetles. The peasant woman
who gave us water cold

from her well said the magpies
steal.  She said the same thing
of the gypsies camped in the valley
below.  in those days

they traveled with gaudy big
wheeled carts pulled by thin horses.
They were passing through too, but
a camera did our stealing.

We climbed a dusty path among
sharp grey rocks past dung beetles
pushing their balls up the slope.
At the top a cloud rolled in

and smothered the view.  We could
hear rain falling below us but sun
burned our shoulders, our heads.
We ate bread and mizithra

still crosshatched from the netted
bag it hung in.  A curious goat came
to watch, then three, then seven
in a circle around us.

I gave them leftover bread. I felt clear
as the sea below on that mountain,
my head empty of fuss: just a calm
body uncoiling in the sun.

White with sharp talons

I saw a snowy owl once,
once only. At Logan Airport
in January I was sitting in a plane
stalled on a runway

there for an hour, traffic
backed up by some distant
storm or computer glitch.
I was fretting, impatient

and then I stared out
the dirty window and saw
him sitting on the dead
weeds. He wore a thin

circlet of dark, a coronet
against the glisten of his
feathers.  He was close
to the runway, gold eyes

half shut, his snowiness
on lightly thatched brown.
He was silence with wings--
a shining pure predator.

It was a visitation
from tundra and dream.
I could have prayed to him
so still, so strangely perfect.

—Marge Piercy

Knopf just brought out Marge Piercy’s 19th poetry book MADE IN DETROIT as well as the paperback of THE HUNGER MOON: New & Selected Poems 1980-2010. Piercy has published 17 novels , most recently SEX WARS; PM Press republished DANCE THE EAGLE TO SLEEP, VIDA and BRAIDED LIVES with new introductions and her first short story collection, THE COST OF LUNCH, ETC. now in paperback with 2 new stories and an introduction. Her memoir is SLEEPING WITH CATS, Harper Perennial. Her newest nonfiction book is MY LIFE, MY BODY: essays, a long interview and some poems, from PM.  Her website is

Monday, January 25, 2016

John Matthias and Jean Dibble, The HIJ

John Matthias has published some thirty books of poetry, fiction, memoirs and essays. He is Editor at Large of Notre Dame Review and taught at the University of Notre Dame for forty years before his retirement. He is also a Life Member of Clare Hall, Cambridge. His most recent books are a three-volume Collected Poems (Shearsman) and the novel Different Kinds of Music (also Shearsman). Two volumes of essays on Matthias's work have been published: Word Play Place: Essays on the Poetry of John Matthias, ed. by Robert Archambeau, and The Salt Companion to the Poetry of John Matthias, ed. by Joe Francis Doerr. A volume of performance pieces, Six Short Plays, is scheduled from BlazeVOX in June.

Jean Dibble, Professor at the University of Notre Dame, is a printmaker and painter that has exhibited extensively, both internationally and nationally since 1978.  Her website reflects a wandering mind, well invested in daydreaming.  One of the founding members of the Mid America Print Council and a current second vice president, she has been active in the organization for most of its existence. A longtime member of Southern Graphics Council International, she is a board member. 

She teaches printmaking.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Charles Bernstein, How I Became Pre-Human

When You Uplift The Transparent Eyeball, Make Sure To Bring Mascara, image by Daniel Y. Harris

How I Became Pre-Human

nd att-
ut m-
ore than
any gi-
rl o-
r b-
oy c-
d dream
On the l-
one shore
ter the apoca-
Vans r-
ace ’r-
d with bracing
nd I sit back
and thi-
nk about lost ri-
verbeds where I buried
My th-
ts before th-
e storm began
or is it
or maybe it
y happened and there is just this beach,
this o-
of regret,
Mascaraed sky.
reach out
to you
every day
I know it’s
too late.
The anthropocene
is the
delusion of a
bathetic interloper
Obscene slogans
on the melting ice.

--Charles Bernstein 

Charles Bernstein's Pitch of Poetry will be out this Spring form University of Chicago Press. His most recent collection of poems is Recalculating, also from Chicago. He teaches at the University of Pennsylvania. More info at EPC  

Sunday, January 17, 2016


The Estranged Attractor, image by AC Evans

(“I Am The Grinder”)

                                    Dual operation zoom experts
                                                have perfectly formed bodies
                                                liveliest test flash and…control
                                    Aspherical modelling
                                                fine grain and stylish
                                                but interchangeable
                                    Shadow details:
                                    Sliding doors in the evening light. Point.
                                    “I am the grinder”.

                                    Details sliding at first sight
                                                in the evening speed of light
                                                detailed shadows
                                    But interchangeable
                                                stylish fine grained
                                                aspherical control test…control
                                    Flash body formed:
                                                perfect zoom expert
                                                dual operation. Point.
                                    “I am the grinder”.



With grit in the knickers you name it we’ve got it
a voice, a Dalek in a wheelchair, a 3D Noddy and
a whole world of amusements.
Looking both ways escapades in city and other famous hotspots
what sort of mind dreams that up as a party piece?
On the Sharon (Stone) right away bolt hammer flu victim and
Boiiiiing! Here we all are in a purpose-built mansion,
a ‘Pink Palace’ in Theydon Bois where else?


Hand-finished winter special walkabouts
true taste magic moments wah-wah sirens
smooth security patrols apocalypse coming lend a hand!
Sharp smashing rave-up scenarios impervious to damage
uncertainty of chance leather jacket Pavlova’s dogs.
Discover her secrets her minimalist Z-up


Meet the stars outrageous under fire
musical comedy touch and go
would you/wouldn’t you say ‘yes’ to the odd meaningless encounter?
Pass it on. One-legged pervert vanishes into the night.
A spiritual healer visits the lads at North Greenwich Tube next to The Millennium Dome
-          they wrap her round a Yamaha R1 100
and start messing about with spanners and ratchets back of crane-grab
bin liners worn over cycling shorts just the thing flowers of fire sombre skies.
The Lords may rule…The Lords may…


Surrounded by fat wheezy blokes in late middle age
(manic and manipulative)
endless CCTV footage probably sooner rather than later
(icy bitch find the switch)
across erased time masochist mode giveaway getaway
infamous street like Reeperbahn


screamed “ICY BITCH…” like no tomorrow
Wannabe Poshsportyscarybaby?
Wannabe Ally? Wannabe Buffy?
Wrong move I guess Omega is equal to or greater than One.
No one knows how


white rose winter femina alba mutilated kids shift product
chief executive grinned cruel mirthless market-driven smile
behind his shiny desk fabulous paperweight
arse-kissing gun-totting boffo locals fall in line for groupie abuse
quiet shy sensitive bored teenagers get plastic dope hooters
when all they want is to be saved from growing up here


in Tiger Bay Drone City West
 rotten floorboards broken windows
weird messages in the barcodes share dreams:
fantasies of Glastonbury pubs shopping hugs poetry
laughter soul-mates astrology
giggling gingers loveable schoolgirls possibly gay


escape from here
with foxy intelligent hippie ladies – anything
goes. Anything.



In the mind’s eye a Dream Fractal is a way of seeing infinity
all the mirrors on Earth but none of them reflect me
imagine a dreamscape posthuman era
long chats chemistry passion undercover mission
find Estranged Attractor exit mainstream

                                    The Lords may rule…The Lords may burn…

Act in The Void beautifully gratuitous
flurry of lexical mixology & techno text
lurid fusion
appearance of Store Detective From The Future
Omega Lightning
frightening blinked in strange Earthlight where am I?
Structure treatment motifs theme context all unfamiliar territory
no plan from Dr. Hexagon
helter skelter Riot Grrrls reinvent metaphysics no knickers
emit laser death-ray
post implosion condition of contemporary culture
tunnel of hate slipped her a fiver

                                    The Lords may rule…The Lords may burn…

                                    Blasphemies anything/ something sombre skies
‘nice bloke’ but fiery and salacious
Strobe Magnum in Drone City beyond Hollow Hills
notoriously elegant (coat and shirt both second-hand)
leery beer boys in bad make-up prowl stratosphere
probing for her toggled draw-string memories
bizarre communications
 highlight obscure nature of turbulence

                                    The Lords may rule…The Lords may burn…

Find wave function of all dreams everywhere
sort of sub-atomic event. Perhaps…


Behind the line as if by magic (those junkyard hymns)
watch out live rail explodes mysterious numbers
pornography of public obscenity
pylon legs low buildings steps up grass bank
darkened colonnades escalator of love secret life
of multi-storey car parks
empty back-streets high rise phantasms spectral walkways
spiralling into the gloom flooded fields distant trees
still waters
so deep… so deep…


 I knew the Estranged Attractor lived in phased-out space
yo-yo-ing up and down round and round here there and everywhere
 turn on ball of foot, derisory, ruthless laugh. Overcast sky.
            In walked this canny old wizard sorta like Gandalf the Grey
 in an ankle-length sixties maxi-coat. Rainbow path (night was falling)
dilapidated caravan, two dish aerials, take out the guesswork, open the candy box,
phone the signalman, read a good book, cut a long story short. So, 
they blew their minds nervous tick tock tick tock tick tick tick
…and Booooom! Jet Wash Here.
            No drama school for scandal g-g-g-git off git up git out git going
git it in your soul, angel polished my windscreen. Somewhere questions were asked. 
Frosted grass early morning head in noose hint of desperation
 such modesty butters no parsnips. Stumped humped thumped and a –
            I knew the Estranged Attractor lived…(reprise)


I reeeeeally am a true twentieth century girl
a futuristic beauty, a swinging dolly with
va-va-voom body language
and cutie-cutie baby-doll looks:
so I gulped down a Chinese Lantern
slipped in a Birdy Breeze Block,
dragged out my bi-stretch zip-suit,
my eighteen carat gold-plated rope-chain,
my up-to-the-minute zig-zag top,
my best split skirt
with loop backs, all-over sequins,
padded micro-fibre hips and flared, detachable snaffle-bars,
my luxury unisex fleece-wraps and chain-link razor-wire rocket lamps.
            The outfit was permanent and painless;
it had a titanesque surreality
and plenty of eyesores – if only you knew.


Where are you?
Actually I bought this in Ibiza at Popcorn Utopia
a pop cornucopia next to Acid Heaven
hot-pants little shorts catsuits
faux-femmes on the borderline
array of jocks smorgasbord of beefcake
goosey-goosey gander
forbidden grooves and hands-in-the-air anthemic chart choons.
Trail of destruction left by loony lodger on run from one-off party night ‘ceremony’    happy hour mystic crafts crystal balls and tarot/ rune consultations.
The ultimate in stylish hidden agendas
descent into colourful language (zoinkkkk!!!) no chaser.

Off centre nympho purist launched in a blaze of glory
(but feeling like a strand of overcooked spaghetti)
 I ran through a hundred positions:
cobbled courtyards shadowy cloisters clunk and you’ll miss it
re-mix the night sounds morbid but it’s beautiful just beautiful.
I spoke out and was branded a jam roly-poly, treated like a piece of shit
by the goons on the door, told to die young stay pretty unassuming
incorporate the reverse geometry of doomy displaced urban settings.
Love my platforms.

Am I a wave? Am I a particle? I live on borrowed time…
The Lords may…zapped by a –

--AC Evans