The Nacreous Oughts

27 February 2006

You understand the fundamental questionability of pre-crime methodology.

K. S.

25 February 2006

Bring me your dead!

K. S.

24 February 2006

Canonical Flarf, from a comment on Silliman's Blog:

Jordan Davis, Million Poems Journal (Faux Press)
Katie Degentesh, The Anger Scale (Combo Books, forthcoming)
Benjamin Friedlander, Simulcast: Four Experiments in Criticism (University of Alabama Press)
Drew Gardner, Petroleum Hat (Roof)
Nada Gordon, V. Imp (Faux Press)
Nada Gordon, Folly (forthcoming)
Rodney Koeneke, On the Clamways (Sea.Lamb.Press)
Rodney Koeneke, Musee Mechanique (BlazeVOX, forthcoming)
David Larsen, The Thorn (Faux Press)
Michael Magee, My Angie Dickinson (Zasterle, forthcoming)
Michael Magee, Mainstream (BlazeVOX, forthcoming)
K. Silem Mohammad, Deer Head Nation (Tougher Disguises)
K. Silem Mohammad, Breathalyzer (Edge, forthcoming)
K. Silem Mohammad, Dutch Sound (Heretical Texts/Factory School, forthcoming)
Gary Sullivan, Elsewhere (self-published)
Gary Sullivan, How to Proceed in the Arts (Faux Press)

K. S.

22 February 2006

Remember Amnesia?

   The Wounded Supply Chain

I am half erased by this
yet it's the world
grows dim

victory of the shadows
moving toward consensus

K. S.

21 February 2006

You loved the game, now watch the movie.

Heavy metal snow.

"Io is a virtual desert planet (complete with cactus). It looks a lot like Arizona, Mexico, or parts of Texas. Apparently, it is a prime source of produce."

K. S.

20 February 2006

Dinky Alp.

"Apple confirmed Thursday it has included such a warning in its Intel- based computers since it started selling them in January.

The embedded poem reads:

'Your karma check for today:
There once was a user that whined
his existing OS was so blind
he'd do better to pirate
an OS that ran great
but found his hardware declined.' " --via the Buffalo List

K. S.:-)

19 February 2006

"When I say, as I have more than once, that there are more good poets now writing than ever before in our history, I don’t necessarily mean that more great poems a la ”The Waste Land” or “Howl” (or whatever your iconic preference might be) are being written at this moment, tho that’s not inconceivable."

K. S.

18 February 2006

   "How The Ants Got Famous

They stood on their hind legs
congratulating themselves. How
they did, the ants, become famous.
Lifting six times their weight:
grains of sugar, wheat capsules
and so many types of resins
called capitulations. Even
in the love generations, men
were heartier than their women,
chosen very well, as it is always
the case, for their breeding:
Connecticut to New Hampshire,
Wilshire to Orange
and Pinal to Greenlee county.
The march of these creatures
was not very long to us
but to them, it was
a very long and hoary deal.
Tree trunks to consider, alimony,
panhandling and no hole to crawl into.
It was a very long way to Mecca."

--Carmen is a Cat

K. S.

16 February 2006


Woke up this morning and it seemed to me,
that every night turns out to be
A little more like Bukowski.
And yeah, I know he's a pretty good read.
But God who'd wanna be?
God who'd wanna be such an asshole?
God who'd wanna be?
God who'd wanna be such an asshole?

Well we sat on the edge of the river,
the crowd screamed, "Sacrifice the liver!"
If God takes life, he's an Indian giver.
So tell me now why, you'll tell me never.
Who would wanna be?
Who would wanna be such a control freak?
Well who would wanna be?
Who would wanna be such a control freak?

Well see what you wanna see. You should see it all.
Well take what you want from me. You deserve it all.
Nine times out of ten our hearts just get dissolved.
Well I want a better place or just a better way to fall.

But one time out of ten, everything is perfect for us all.
Well I want a better place or just a better way to fall.
Here we go!

If God controls the land and disease,
keeps a watchful eye on me,
If he's really so damn mighty,
my problem is I can't see,
well who would wanna be?
Who would wanna be such a control freak?
Well who would wanna be?
Who would wanna be such a control freak?

Evil home stereo, what good songs do you know?
Evil me, oh yeah I know, what good curves can you throw?

Well all that icing and all that cake,
I can't make it to your wedding, but I'm sure I'll be at your wake.
You were talk, talk, talk, talkin' in circles that day,
when you get to the point make sure that I'm still awake, OK?

Went to bed and didn't see
why every day turns out to be
a little bit more like Bukowski.
And yeah, I know he's a pretty good read.
But God who'd wanna be?
God who'd wanna be such an asshole?"

--Modest Mouse

K. S.

15 February 2006

   "Hurricane Bret

Curveship's wolves glimmer.
Golden across the subfusc tarmac
Sky all dark ahead
I follow, & in the dark I see
Stray hints of pink
A howling thought
Walking on footless leg-ends"

--Mowgli Bohr, A Riot in Heaven (2003)

K. S.

14 February 2006

   "Rosier Ebb Came" (An Anagrammatic Acrostic Poem)

Riddle macabre,  abstruse with hidden wrought stigma,
Odd chauvinist,  mocking morals, man's liberty,
Somberly write   black tales with naughty key raptures,
Imperiled with   rank lusts a devil tawny recaptures.
Enraged critic,  observing printed works bitterly,
Recount wilder   scenes, where in sky rides a sole horseman.
Elapsing years   erase, and your stories stiller be,
But imperative   bursts of wit still appear cynical,
Byronic ghosts   imply rues blacker than such kinds be.
Conundrum dark,  eerie host who asks: "Can such things be?"
Atheist, jester, retain what was your whole source, man.
Mystic teacher,  cobwebs and skulls litter a sere pinnacle,
Eternally, your  elusive wraith remains distraught enigma.

© 1972 Walter Shedlofsky
[Originally published in Ambrosia #1 (June, 1972)]

Pataphysical Sobriety Test.

"It was, to borrow the art critical language of the time, a colour field." (via bOING bOING)

K. S.

13 February 2006

    The Marriage of TEX and Lojban

But though its lure alone makes life worth living,
In that strange light I feel I am not far
And tails that bear the bifid barb of hell.

It is the land where beauty's meaning flowers;
I held the book beneath my coat, at pains
Calling and chattering in a joyous haste

And curious drops, disquieting and cold,
I do not know if ever it existed--
I ceased to hope--because I understood.

(A cento from Lovecraft)

K. S.

12 February 2006


It was the night before the famous day
When that befell of which I write. The house
Was silent as the dark: nor man nor mouse
Stirred anywhere. The weary children lay
Asleep upstairs, their stockings, after play,
Were hung beside the fire, with Mama’s blouse;
While, meditating on the morrow’s grouse,
I must have dozed my errant wits away.

At any rate, I had a curious dream
In which a little whiskered gnome in red
Came down the chimney with a set of Tennyson,
And perished in the flames. One tiny scream
And he was gone like wax or melted lead....
But for some weeks thereafter we had venison."

--Vincent Starrett (1886--1976)

K. S.

10 February 2006


The song, scorned,
walked not away
to sulk alone
or hitch a ride
with someone else

nor did it die
as you might think"

--Ichabod Crayon, Songs in the Key of Lost (1966)

K. S.

07 February 2006

"Sometimes academia makes me feel like a dog who has to drag his ass across the lawn just to ease the itch of the anal worms."

K. S.

05 February 2006

   1. Murder in the Green Zone

Years of no stars, or few;
they said that all the stars were on the ground.

A trouble that can't be named,
white phosphorus spies in the castle walls.

   2. Legitimate Danger

The darkness give me you again
Game played more than a hundred years ago

The cold, shallow music sinks
High mutiny avalanche
Your soft hand on my brow

Too flat, but superb.

   3. After Al-Hallaj

O Thou Who art as close to me
as my own skin, as far
as Time is from Eternity;
things have learned to walk which ought to crawl.

Thou blazest forth before my gaze
till everything seems Thine,
and then Thou fadest--all is nil,
for things have learned to walk which ought to crawl.

This cannot be Thy distance,
for that would fortify the fool I am;
nor can it be Thy nearness,
for I would not be lonesome still:
and things have learned to walk which ought to crawl.

Neither can it be Thy war,
for that would mean my instant destruction;
nor yet Thy peace, that had solaced me--
but things have learned to walk which ought to crawl.

K. S.

03 February 2006


forgotten long hours soft
embedded in a high song
sharing the one laden blood
the wide view from that sheer bluff

forever among clouds lodge
resistless to the old loss
finding in our returned breath
to level the divine bread"

Daewu Wagstaff, The President's Crown of Thorns (1993)

K. S.

01 February 2006

"The whickles were strange petroleum-eating insects that were responsible for the declining production in the Pennsylvania [oil-] fields. Gib [Morgan] was doing his best to exterminate them. His method was to sprinkle applejack on the bushes around the wells; the whickles would come and get drunk and Gib would catch them." --Mody C. Boatright, Folklore of the Oil Industry (1963)

"Lennard Davis' founding study, Enforcing Normalcy, posits the source and salient character of ableist ideology as specifically Modern, while his recent work on "Dismodernism" envisions "a new category based on the partial, incomplete subject whose realization is not autonomy and independence, but dependency and interdependence." Deliberate or not, this phrasing reads practically identical to axioms in innovative poetics (re: readership as well as composition), specifically those poetics associated with Modernist, avant-garde, and contemporary poetries of "indeterminacy." " --Patrick Durgin, via the Buffalo List

K. S.

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