Chris Nealon

As If To Say

So I’m digging these new forms of compositional helplessness

“I bring to this project an immense wind”

I try to write descriptively,

But it all comes out a calligram: check-mark inanition: flicked wrist of creation

              the gaming movement of the vowel sounds
              chorus and apostrophe

Only your prettiness is keeping you free

              not the Olivetti storm-cloud of the first half-century
              not the halo or the movement of the hand

Still between the perspectival foreground and the nauseating

              chaomorphosis beyond the garden wall I manage to imagine the city
              as a series of instructible sparks

As if freaked with sociability

As if to say the topmost layer of the misery comes off and we can love again

              not Thom but the eddies of his having been here

              first-person usurpations of indifferent pentameter
              the psychic and the topical

I seriously have a mind of winter
But you: San Francisco: lightest pressure of a snowshoe on the carpet of
              pollen: someone singing Shambala

Divide your Palladian year by ten, how much does that mean a month is?

I don’t know it was spring