This collaborative poem is part of a project between Serena Piccoli and William Allegrezza. They began this book project in March 2020 and continue writing to this day with fifteen pieces currently having been finished. The process is simple. Each poem begins with a line by Serena. After that, the poets respond to each line with one of their own, and the poem continues to be traded until one poet decides that the poem is finished. Only slight edits are done after the lines have been written, so the poets spend a significant amount of time on each line since each line determines the direction, and often the poem will zig-zag towards a conclusion that doesn’t quite conclude.
Syntax and Defection
In front of the mirror I'm speaking with a funnel in my mouth,
gagging but forming words like telescoping lines,
displacement of syntax, earwax, knickknacks
broken. No one is at the door, waiting
for my thoughts to enlarge and come out.
No one is waving a banner for me, for us,
for the gargoyle pouring rain into my funnel
where anxiety grows as I look through orange light
in tunnel vision funnel fusion fear stress boom boom--
thought, I can barely think through the pain.
I'd better wear my funnel as a hat and extract
the filament that leads through sparks to defection.
Serena Piccoli is an Italian poet and playwright. Her political chapbook silviotrump was published in 2017 by Moria Poetry, Chicago, USA. Her poems have been published in anthologies and magazines in UK, USA, Canada, Nigeria, Italy and Romania. She mainly writes about political, environmental, social contemporary issues with a touch of irony. She writes both in English and in Italian (her mother tongue). Twitter: @piccoli_serena https://serenapiccoli.wixsite.com/serenapiccoli
William Allegrezza edits the press Moria Poetry and teaches at Indiana University Northwest.
He has previously published many poetry books, including Step Below: Selected Poems
2000-2015, Stone & Type, Cedar, Ladders in July, Fragile Replacements, Collective Instant,
Aquinas and the Mississippi (with Garin Cycholl), Covering Over, and Densities, Apparitions;
two anthologies, The City Visible: Chicago Poetry for the New Century and La Alteración del
Silencio: Poesía Norteamericana Reciente; seven chapbooks, including Sonoluminescence
(co-written with Simone Muench) and Filament Sense (Ypolita Press); and many poetry reviews,
articles, and poems. He founded and curated series A, a reading series in Chicago, from
Come, Thief - Jane Hirshfield
New Selected Poems - Eavan Boland
Goblin Market and Other Poems - Cristina Rossetti
Making Cocoa for Kingsley Amis - Wendy Cope
Topsy-Turvy - Charles Bernstein
The Thorn Rosary - Eileen Tabios
Songs to Come for the Salamander - Mark Young
The Granite Pail - Lorine Niedecker
Prairie Style - C.S. Giscombe