Does the form of the poem offer its own kind of signaling? Will our belief in evocative language be enough to cover up our tracks in narrative consistency? Does the protagonist need to be something we can relate to? If the world is facing an apocalypse and the conditions of that apocalypse announce themselves more loudly every day, should our writing take on a more irreverent air? Will anyone read anything one hundred years from now?
An Exchange of Suggested Itineraries
There are no simple acts. Light absorption diminishes the capacity for signaling. You signal. I receive. Input: Certain chemicals. Response: Pain avoidance. The breadth of a lifetime is shaded with cheap inks the color of plucked grasses. I get the sense you no longer wish to be invisible. Is this
why you want to return home? A dwelling is more than a place to shelter
from rain. A deck houses a bbq. The porch, a collection of day-glo
boogie boards, strollers & broken car seats. A broom lists in the corner.
We call it The Spider Hut. The fascias form the outer edge & have a
groove in them to receive the soffit lining sheets. The reading list has
changed. You toss around the names of a few authors you’ve never
bothered to read. Bataille. Barthes. Ballard. There is a desire to
taxonomize these things, to place a structure & order over them. Each
object should have a corresponding target completion date. Then again,
the future is predicated on some of it actually happening. At least the
ocean is constant. We look out over the water. The sun illuminates
dimples on the surface. Each swell has its own unique topography.
Flasher rigs penetrate the inky darkness & bring with them the oily scent
of meat. This far down only luminescence can provide insights into
coding sequences. Something smallish snags in my periphery. The truth
is, it’s just the start of another distant migraine. Under white light,
metadata becomes strangely evocative. Good old boys pine for the days
of pale yellow frontiers. Oh, how the sun used to cast its light over our pickups! Oh, how this senseless parade of experts drone on & on! The gutters of the roof
are filled with acorns & seed money. Let me annotate the next thought
for you. You scribble notes in the margins outlining a film in which a
marine research facility becomes the site of a curiously charged sexual
encounter. The writing is decayed, illegible. One room here holds
transmission equipment. Another, HVAC gear. The lunch room sits
below the emergency exit. One of us sits in the corner waiting for
someone give out advice too. Misplaced affection was never more
misplaced than now. There is a general query, some generic words on
the wall, but no response.
Craig Foltz is the author of three books of poetry | prose (via either Compound Press or Ugly Duckling Presse. His work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. He currently lives and works in a remote outpost on the west coast of New Zealand. More info at: www.craigfoltz.com