Sunday, January 22, 2006

TWO POEMS by Andy Gricevich

tinny buzz
after factory


louder as the pay’s
turned down

where birds fled
from paper mill’s steam,
now empty sky

doubles itself
against the ground:

the silence,
hammered from the ear

the teeming
thin-spread dollar’s

echoing blare

making meaning
far from here


the world turns out
to be a tinny buzz at
the edge of poetry. barked

or embarked. teenage
bip-bap in the mouth.
a sheen of spectacles

thrust into the flash
denuding attitude. leans
to “affect modules”

recommended by his
counselor’s daughter
who, he imagined,

seduced him in a
film, reel five, the
one nobody gets to.

he’s paid well in personal
satisfaction, would like to take
your sponsor for a walk,

to wing a world
of noise into stands
of the dead silent.



a word
over the ivied

a gang
of arbor

as sheep

in witnessed

they were in the pay
of homeland security,
operating in voltages
on foreign shores

mirrors all the same


a hot dog
of concentration:

bits of roach

fill out the time

and the news

side by side
they face the onrush
of ongoing days

we don’t know what to make of it
but we’ll make something

not as bad
and worse
than we expected


Admittedly the shad
wore undergarments to the ball. Premonitions of
the Cenozoic woke the pitcher from his daydream. Tide
but no sea. “It’s dark in the fort,”
cried the pets, in terror or delight we couldn’t tell.
Secretly annoyed, I gave up on the luminous project. On the luminous
edge. Ghosts were unhelpful, or unimpressed. The menu
could barely say “eggs,” faded as it was by
years of mother-complexes, discounted for students.
Fuck! I’m so credentialed I could wash!

The general, a computer programmer, a stern look.
The realization: so much fails to depend
on reason. The retention of reason. The bulbs
underground, showing themselves in phenomena.
The ego, rice cakes, literally talking.
The flames, the prison camp, page B39.
The Beatles, the Stones, the freedom to pass
“defense of marriage” laws.
The sexiness of gangrene, a reversibility. The anti-theory,
the love of ones place, the delicate
catheter of participation by absence.

Poppin’ out babies: the comfy liberal’s caviar. By now the bases are loaded
with soldiers of color held illegally beyond the terms of contract, while time

itself has become a new excuse for resentment. Boats are boats.
We could have asked whether there was anything in particular we wanted
to win. Rather than say what it means, the father confessor casts a stern look
over the rails. Raked but not sown. Belief versus knowledge
versus thinking; still there are these spots in his field of vision, into which
anything could fit. If the mind is a wax, the brain wanes, given the nurture
of habitual speech (“terror,” “responsible,” “justice,” “positive,” “habitual”).
More soup? Body suits or bags that? Identity makes men mean.

Andy Gricevich, a poet, actor, and musician, lives in Madison, Wisconsin. His poems have appeared, or will appear, in Mirage #4/Period(ical), Unlikely Stories, and the Spineless Books Flat Books series.