A mandate is just that. There’s señor that needs you. He has no interest in poetry; I wonder if that’s true; his thoughts knit together like mica piles, shouts ricocheting through more than 1 voicetrack, lobbing pinned acorns and underbrush until they’re scooped up holding our breath, 2, bounced, kicked and gloved by catalysts.


Study Freud or any evolutionary researcher of the antic.

Stick with insoluble nonfiction you’ll fall into a niche in 5 days
Blindfolded. (Our guarantee.)

Such brilliant dislocations a\we\re expected; it goes
Beyond, there are dark, unknown predicates fixated on louder procedures

But in their giddy case procedures to see into a surfeit of space,
A sumptuous, soilless bond,

The angels.


It’s only words, assembly, to quote you.

They are real actors, not people.


We have no idea of here & now —

Connections lost in reality were scarifying.

And like some peers who frame their searches socially,
we learn lightly. We’ve slathered each other w/ axioms over the poor
and excluded. So there’s nothing else? I can’t tell, because I wouldn’t know.

Partnerships were constructs, 1st a little lunatic,
                 sometimes febrilly culled.
There is a nothing. Yet nothing was forbidden.
Or there’s a burst of daft tone substituting info
                 for a lifetime.
I lower your voice to approximate parity.

Somewhere, what’s a sociopath?
We have reality subtracting poetry.


We have no idea of here & now —

Whatever we thought about talking, making up
was a lot better than “looking pretty close” watching others spin
like “sentience” refined by distance

& that’s the gist of it —

Finalists (e.g. Tom Clark) quit general practice — work converted to industry,
little or no honor system. W/ that, I’ll drop our language, the vicarious lexicon

To conform to our belief system to get forgotten.



Your new book.

Spinoza noted sorcery and spiritual drama attract circus talent, theatrical and contextual. Spinning ponies could fill in those top spots... you apparently go through braille (touch and go) channels crossing out checks payable to visual topoi. Wild priests and magicians once ran up debts like this but later they were less focused, chasing butterflies that keep auditioning — over such whiny hills cute and cuter butterflies have butterflies, why?



Everything I do is sin. One after another piles up.
Yet the nuclear self lingers for a year or more, that fellow (he’s a fan, even now)
we grow. “Absolutely.” Them.


They’re throwbacks to un-hurting instincts, the last we inherit, recall over time.
Suddenly as told by 2 dads, 3 moms or any of us,
No one is inferior or too serious, either;
We can maneuver with the cash of inevitability around many
Gender-specific no noes! shattering them.


Our love tosses in bed burnishing a logo.
Shame on the t in tear drop lamps above the island.
(Bikini Island.. w/ a handshake in the center.) We’ll yield this echelon

To nothing more authentic than having unadorned communal assent.
You’re holding me, middle of a welding
Head-of-light, until my vertebrae burn. We grow. Them.


Riddles are everywhere while violence underlies our pleasant lives. People who may not see this are killed daily, so we wind up w/ the visual goods we enjoy. Shaky ground. Is there any other kind? I mean, we’re all pragmatists. I mean... I think that means instead of living under the sun and the moon and seeing the pollen on the lawn, one is living in an enigmatic scheme of one’s own not-seeing, blinded by periodic breakthroughs one calls substantial. To see what else might be there, there is Geof Huth, a neo-pragmatic sustained focus but also a discursive, contentious stance taker who rakes the ground for graphical poetries, ground that’s permanently shaky. Ten years ago at [dbqp.blogspot.com/] Huth argued against that repeated, generalized call for substance and breadth in visual poetry (you might say, in all effects, poetry) — voiced by those he characterizes as new-criticism-inspired — pinpointing the unique semantic appeal that graphic-verse offers as motes of a riddle: “A visual poem might be an epic or an ode, but it is more likely to be something minimalist. And that enigmatic movement of meaning across its surface is its particular gift to esthetics.” Huth might have said that. You don’t have to subscribe to this view to find value in it as a point of contention and counter-contextualizing w/ respect to pop (albeit dated) theory (new criticism). 

Contention is fine, but Huth goes further visualizing gamuts, checking others’ work, displaying his own, amplifying, looking to see. From Huth’s posts a decade ago, we travel from his base in Schenectady to Manhattan, California and Texas. Huth discovers typographic sleight in a store sign at Bryant Park, and then ogles (correction: we readers are ogling; Huth is photographing) a graffiti-enscorched men’s room (w/ hand dryer, hand mirror, etc.) in a Midtown restaurant, an occasion to unpack a base irony — “At the door (my egress), a joke appears: Very Top Secret. But I don’t believe it. The creation of the text might be secret, but the texts themselves are quite public.” I like these pieces executed in “heavy pollen” around Caroga Lake, NY, photos of his own glyphs inscribed into microspores on auto glass and on a car’s hood, as well as one on a glass tabletop at a wilderness café, “Pollen over Glass over Fabric.”


Song: My neighbors have been urbanized.
Does it matter only a few minutes ago I learned to
Write above my welcome?

Copy: Drink to one’s health & bicameral madness
As sugar consumption skyrockets. O Canada


A fop sur la route is a Parisian invention, an essentialist’s incarnation. It’s now English. Le Smoking for driving, dressing on the left: your character lifts, lukewarm and husky. Splash.

Steer clearly. Highway safety — bow, everything amazing has lowered discourse.

Preaching to the tenor choir, I love what we do together

Like switching work bags, mixing it up then. We should be mortified but impressed.
                    (This siegecraft apparently works.
For my driving, I’ve hired a fop strategist.)


Upbeat message. We call that yeah

Parentheses to explore;

The 4-D printer’s, they have many followers, you on it?

Prigs pick up; driftwood gets epigrammatic, upsides are unrelated, pale, immaculate

As one’s eyes reset

Focus some more.
Upbeats hold snorkel like typography that can fade to
Nothing or the opposite, periodically or
Altogether for the kids, the innocents?
                                Anything to take from the a-argument
For missing stairs..

for Kenny G

Pantoum: The instant we select a rogue anime we also begin singing to ourselves,
Clio strikes commanding octaves and unreal rumors circulate.

~ To my understanding it turns out ~
Witchy rhythm is baroque-cheesy if it’s parody paying homage to the
Subject. Or object

Witch: Pass the white I think they’re gloves.

Off the rack, hey, I’ve discovered what’s scary
In some directions the focus got noticed.

— the bespoke jacketed
Sufi? At the mall that’s closing?
He’s canceled!

We’re in no hurry

Snow and sun? We’re expecting something.

There’s no good time to get sun, which is a tragedy.

Right here we want clarity about motives, keep delivery un/pinched.. slightly about here.. chance of showers, now, still in a long silence we’re

Standing — rain and everything neutrinos can’t stand scattering. Next the sun we say shines, nipping, filing matter, spinning, capturing the dress casual of our meaning it and not tempted.

Some of you and me was here, and more ‘there you go’ noting, retreating to emancipating solitude, keeping / adding up the wait time you say, sporting by degrees the related changes you seem to see and are.


Frame: A diminished mood will be buoyed by scatterings of photos and books, most left unread. More: atextual sources as fodder for your text, new ontological components for thinking, composing, as well as subprocesses harder to isolate and observe as they flood into short term memory. Add your touch and all you touch, everything you see, good sounds and less humidity as you walk or sit along any surface, any pang, faculties for balance, direction, toes and feet, tastes and smells, motions, textures, feelings from everything so far. Bring that (as much as you like) to our ambient government. Government divided in two. First, liberal arts loosened from esthetic scholasticism, inventing new suppositions for research and intimacy. Second, wiry empirical jolts, ambience that comprise (sic) enmeshments within a readymade mood and control structure parallel to vocational education in poetics; appliance hint: a job with a hot plate.


Look me in the eye, I’m ruined.

Diagram conditions of ex sentences, touching both elbows behind your back —

Trompe l’oeil conditions I now know are approximating mock abstractions. (Once seen

You know it thru an evolutionary pin drop

Like mind and body worship, real abstraction is vicarious before conforming to a belief system.) Or is

It just an illustration?


Don’t be afraid.

Eh, if I could let myself go, fearless — living and bereaved like ruined plum.

You’ve never been wild about old desire, but he’ll allege you go where you have to go.


Bruise will stop by later.
I’ve gone werewolf. Both true to form.


Monumentality is a silly environs for hobos at a point of time when esthetics are pitched to viable contexts über intimacies and other intentions. For humorists, the monumental is a free radical to chew out or evade, tactically. Macgregor Card tries something comedically different in Souvenir Winner (2002, Hophophop Press), a collection of nine short verses (“verses” is the term) that carry on about themselves (of course), also about “mother,” “Pauline,” and other family relations among immortal lonely hearts out there where “teeth soak of their own accord” and “fluency is the chart of an architect / eyeballing space, and the chart, a poet’s diplom’.”

Card dedicates Souvenir Winner, tellingly, formally, to Alexander Scriabin and Achilles Rizzoli. Scriabin is felt at the surface, emphatic grammar shifts, as well as tonal splinters, compressed harmonics that distinguish archaic, antic mergers of “footman,” “Christ,” and “a porpoise in a pretty tune.” Yet Rizzoli is the principal lonesome fogy and recurring motif for Card’s ultimately upbeat romp through stencilled space. Rizzoli, an architectural draftsman who lived in mid-20th-century San Francisco, is appreciated today for oversized Beaux Arts renderings of Kathedrals, huge symbolic portraits, and other big-scale pieces crammed with odd poetry, anagrams and fake quotations often translated into a secret code of his own. Bona fide ‘outsider’ monumentalist, Rizzoli is the architect of choice for Card to chart with. Also on.


Card’s reworking Rizzoli parallels John Ashbery’s Girls on the Run, a storybook in verse about small fry linked loosely to Henry Darger, another outsider and monumentalist who authored an illustrated novel of over 15,000 pages, The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What Is Known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinnian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion. But Ashbery’s and Card’s strategies for adaptation are different. Ashbery’s freely descriptive and much longer chronicle draws on Darger as “only a jump-off point,” Forrest Gander suggests; whereas Card’s diminutive lyrics substitute fruitful accidents and nonsequiturs as supportive elements of cohesive story telling. In attempting to complement Rizzoli’s visual spectacles, Card’s is the more exfoliated imagery, revitalizing a belated Beaux Arts consciousness that Rizzoli himself describes as one “hermetically sealed spherical inalienable maze of light and sound seeing imagery expand in every direction.”

Some people that are sick are not people.
They are hereditary balls of light

This begins verse “VIII” in Souvenir Winner, a twenty-line schizophrenic paean to oracular irony where distinctions among metaphor and simile, cause and effect, eye and I, object and subject vaporize into “the souvenir / of flung windows.” We begin again, instructed that some of the sick are not people, but “balls of light” as the poem continues:

like the tallest man in the world
must be lonely looking
no one in the eye all the time.
I couldn’t seem to move, Pauline,
the famous men from stars to tears ...

‘The tall guy, one of those lonely stars, is a fire ball I can’t move. I can’t make him come sob down here, that is, even as I think you up, I can neither see nor move myself or you, Pauline, I feel sick.’ To accede to this logic is to be possessed of an oceanic albeit menacing enchantment that, in my case, wakens long-sublimated, communal attributes of a once-content childhood, one given to perfecting a petulant naiveté, and one resonant, I suspect, with affects on Card of Rizzoli’s life and work.

The impression that Rizzoli serves as a running motif is reinforced by the inclusion of three of Rizzoli’s designs, it seems, as well as swatches of quotes from his supposed prose, slogans and working titles. Still, Card upends the initial impact of a one-on-one appropriation as collaborative transaction. In epigraphs, text annotations, and especially his “Notes” that follow the nine poems, Card discloses how he supplements Rizzoli by lifting text or ideas from a range of better known sources, including the New Testament, Lord Byron and John D. Rockerfeller, Jr., and by inserting fragments from a number of inscriptions on public buildings in New York. Not all these borrowings are straightforward, though. In the ninth and final verse, Card miscues the reception for the opening four lines by referencing a biblical passage in italics just below and to the right of line four. The passage is Paul’s Romans, Chapter 12, Verses 3-8. In the King James version it starts, “For even as we have many members in one body...so we the many are one body in Christ, and each one members of one another ...” Here are the opening lines to Card’s verse:

My roof is done like a faun into tears.
Never seen despite all its rich article.
A fairy wand in a court of law, twittering, faultless,
Mute, staked as a mare to a formal lawn.

Card rocks the sweeping, representational register of the referenced text (we, members, one body, Christ) into utter reversals of Paulist dogma: fugitive simile and Gnostic incongruity (roof like a faun, fairy wand), through which glints of representation shine, only briefly, like waning metonyms both “twittering” and “faultless.”

Card exposes a baseline ambition later in the poem:

Tell the good old lowering eyes – broad feet
toward the door – I’m a poet, showdog
rightly termed dreamer, skaters on blockheads,
scented peers. “I have only one plate of soup.”

Card bludgeons Paul’s certainties (sitting targets, admittedly): “we have many members” is taken down several notches by “I’m a poet, showdog”; “one body” melts into “one plate of soup.” For the showdog, inferential exactitude is an on- or off-affair. As for his reference to the biblical passage, Card reveals in conversation that the intent is to have Paul’s Romans “echo” within his poem, without direct quotation.

The good question to pose at this point is, why bother to take on Paul, Romans, and such? My hunch is – and it’s a fairly sure bet – architectonic voices in Card’s head encouraged his ambition. Churchy texts and artifacts by Rizzoli motivate Card’s lyric, as in Card’s volunteering citations of Rizzoli at the end of “V. Yield to Total Elation”:

We are almost tempted to call him sweetheart.
The light that made Jesus speak through a sonnet.

If Rizzoli plays with matches, Card yells ‘fire’ and catches hell.

... I’m a poet, showdog
rightly termed dreamer, skaters on blockheads,
scented peers. “I have only one plate of soup.”
How much will you need? “A cupful of tears.”

Echoes? Card calls out the name Paul or Pauline over a dozen times in the nine verses, and refers to Rome or Romans six times. For good measure (and ghostly after-affects), the passage from Romans referenced in the final poem is ascribed historically to Paul. While Paul’s text has been in effect erased, key lexical items are distributed throughout Souvenir Winner – God, Christ, love, grace – as well as close paraphrases: Paul’s admonition, “not minding high things, but yielding to the lowly,” is mirrored by Card in “a debt / of honor paid for in plain fact, humility.” Card’s “My arm’s an idler’s rod inveighed against genius” can be traced to Paul’s “Do not be wise within yourselves.”


Echoes happen within architectural plans that afford vast interior space to exceed normal acoustical barriers. Cathedrals come to mind, certainly to Rizzoli’s mind. Card has examined Rizzoli’s drawings and writings on Kathedrals at length, and then in his “Notes” Card gives evidence of his search for inspiration in other Beaux Arts structures, such as banks and post offices in Manhattan and Brooklyn. An impression I have is of a poet so on the verge of elaborated ceremony he plunges into it physically and over time, a process-under-the-influence that might appear to some as extraordinary or even wreckless.

I love mourning on Earth,
decorating my fortune wheel.

Card’s architectural immersion is reflected in his formalist textual structures, as well. A quick scan of the verses shows colonnade-like symmetries: even-numbered poems (the mossy shades between columns?) are numbered but otherwise left untitled and each winds up with a 5- or 6-line coda; odd-numbered poems (the columns?) are numbered and titled after coinages ascribed to Rizzoli, and each odd-numbered poem consists of three stanzas, whose middle part can contain any even number of lines from 10 to 20, but whose beginnings and endings are always four lines. For example:

Earth is light, but mother weighs less
on the surface of my poems than on mars.
Her habitat’s the top-drawer aurora
the sorrowful bell tunes are built in.

Souvenir Winner is grandstanding about itself as poetry, mysterium profundum, and ostentatious paradox rhymed with a vocabulary of romance, dreamy totality and unfashionable gods. Its Beaux Arts pedigree requires nothing less. In aftermath, its fire ball wit blazes, even when doused with hope.

So wrest the dough of toll from me.
A lot is sad, but the habitat’s a fine place to be.
We’ll intuit a city-intimate ray – you and me
and the other ones ...


Macgregor Card’s voices — architectonic, effusive, genial in 2002 — echo in 5 Poems (2009). [www.poetryproject.org/5-poems-by-macgregor-card/]. This music is of another ceremony / totality, a bit like watching how Rizzoli’s “seeing imagery expand in every direction” piles it on plaintively.

“The Merman’s Gift / for Karen Weiser” begins “Brother I need back my sticks...” Merman, a fantastic character, wants everything back for real, calling his gift “sticks ... I hope they bring us closer now,” so close (the self) caller and response giver (the self) are conjoined in off-rhyme —

to range / by grass depressed by possibility alone

One and every / actionable blade of glamor

in a ranger’s vatic underfauna / If we go there

I’m a total wreck my brother / carried off at totalcy

I need for you to wreck / upon yourself

the salvage you recover / from me

and I love you / I need back the sticks I loaned you

— in 80 lines echoing “sticks” give voices to “totalcy,” a normal if vatic monumentality to be attained and released (given back), an entire round. “What is there to sing but a round?” Card asks in “To Friend-Tree of Counted Days,” another of the 5 Poems. Here sticks are branches helping Card “climbing a tree / too high for words / whose leaves are as green.” We’re in another call and response, mystery place; “to range”

I can only imagine
is probably astounding
if seen in generous light


Song: I elect to be ignorant.

All in; all for one; one for all : magical thinking. Left to its systems and devices, it’s tenure, dull intrigue and romance, equipage of the self taught. A Vulcan slice of a childhood domain like improving one’s posture. Ta ta.

Eee god my head is growing. I fool myself all of nature repairs to a cryonics lab that’s been reopened. Just for a second.

I believe in highlights and the mimicking hidden force of gravity. You guys go ahead.

I’m going to walk away, that’s the best stunt.

Gilbert Ryle asks, “might not every action or reaction be a piece of shamming?”

To throw out sleep, trust, and nimbus-wet telepathy — I’ll never feel his arms around me again. Never feel the air on my skin, or wake up in his warm bed, I’m done, I don’t get a chance to try again for anything, not even for something I’m not. I can’t do any better than what I’ve done.

“Absolutely,” visiting professor I don’t know her last name will reply, if asked.


I was never angry. Visually, I bought my first balance ledger. But I learned a lesson.

There was no progress.

Before that Japanese syntax was molded apart. Molded like sister & brother drummers / saxophonists playing to a safety council, tidying memories up with inexact tempo backbeats multiplying from what they did before better pieces from a notebook took hold.

There’s to party.

There’s always looking out, up and through silence & a sense of feeling cornered in music practice. Enough, enough men and women are resigned

wherein smirks press on — drizzle would hurt if verbal but not visible as a short, stout white truck rolls under haze, Kia-like, choked in a soft, fluffy diorama.


Credo: You’re good doing this. Just
Report to command centers for the new pricing, lest
Theft is looking better. Go. Fees balanced

After.. there are vector
Utilities (direct flares) for expressing enzymes with lips.

Hessian perfume like axioms —

You’ve already eaten.. had a bite. Of some.

Turn coincidence into wailer muscle parrying
You to hit the meaning of just whose future is come..


I wrote this 15 minutes ago.
That hasn’t stopped me from modeling.


Pantoum: The future of party killers resides in jail
(given a key, you lose it);

— shifting attention but staying in touch

I forget functioning ghost towns caked with tire tracks,
I draw a blank on Havana interiors and decades of Tonkas

[...there is no outside [...] only what’s already here [what we breathe] below, which is
Immature, impulsive...] [as above]

— I forget empirical relationships, the visual force of
                    a “mottled taxonomy,”

Complaints and sworn declarations,
I forget meeting you.


His haiku was stiff: full, bel canto, with a slight

Vocal member of the Illinois cultural

Studies group carrying a sawed off



Rhode Island’s motto has hope, implicative of passivity discharged by shore conditions, handsome, calm, also a bit on nerve.

Talking it over maximizes signals.
That’s why poetry is the preferred medium.


I’m a member of the takeaway school.
Mean something and take it away.
Fawning v welfare. Belated as a pledge.



Response: Captain, can I bare your hooligan credentials?

Captain scientist, see what we’ve done? See what you can do! throw us in a hole and keep me there, cover me up. Only these exceptions: I wasn’t talking to you. I was speaking to the best interest of the corp. Eh, same time, I’m afraid I can’t keep working with you looking over my shoulder.

I hope I’ve been clear.


Talk is politically cheap. I guesS
...what? on the edge o’ song

When you got up your voice was

Vibrating w/ a head cold, falling
Flat into dust in 4 dimensional motes.

Vibrating = Sturm und Drang,
Dust controls anger / how minds are wed.


To paraphrase ... you cant predict
How or even what youll be taking from your background;
there are too many of you.


Old ideas are out. Cal Tech outsmarts Harvard. Colgate is a better ‘deal’ than either. Tod’s loafer beats Weejuns. Sure.

MoMA in the original shifted genealogy, different periods of shifts changing contexts for us; we were both wearing black Lacoste.


Hotter. Sandier.

— Wetter.

I noticed her too. The earnest one in the PhD scarf, ‘I am very, very anxious and trying to do all I can to eat at the truth.’

I think we’re avoiding intimacy. My other therapist says...
“You know the rules. Get rid of her, Mr Fuzzy is yours.”


Some standards.

Shined asides.

We pick the bests of show to set the timeframe for a prize bowl,
Really a vase,

Set it, let sunset pitch in its foam, declare
Poetry goes thru many drafts.


Writers are still proletarian at the start; each a lone entity in a world dominated by luxury groups.

Conflicted about big money, I’ll pick up anything. I read corporate art management aims to commandeer the pipeline, production to sales. As is fairly obvious when you look at other creative industries, film, tv, music, as marketing small press poetry, poetics, art books integrates with managerial acumen, a chunk of creative taste and decision making stands ready to fall under the control of entrepreneurial influence, NEA, Poetry, Poetry Foundation, down to every slick body.

Parable: All my spam is luxury.

Parable’s silver brown hair is replacing blonde, according to a flier.

I picked up in the same flier that my soul is a hypothesis. A fish out of water surfing coastal states to destroy his wiggly self. Since we live in new enterprises and ecologies, we begged him to learn to swim further and stick with a nearly sublime topic, to rally for more than this textual ceramic holding a spray of looking glass.