Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I Am, I Cried (Said the Book)

                


I was not born
I do not live in Connecticut
My first book was not published by the American Poetry Review
I do not presently live in Staten Island, New York
where I do not edit a poetry press
which has numbers instead of letters for its name

Poems of mine have not been published
not in Cello Entry, Harper's, the Massachusetts Review, Skanky Possum or The Works
so I do not feel compelled to thank the editors of these journals
but I will thank them anyway

there is no copyright
there is no year

no Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication Data
mercifully, there's no website
this is not a first edition

My life is like a ladybug
that is and isn't in your room

Oh, and there is no designer

This is not set in Electra
The cover photograph was not taken by me
and there is no cover photograph

This is not 67 pages bound together
like the men at Thebes who were lovers

There is no Table of Contents drumroll
no cheerful colophon
to remind you that someone's family has been wealthy
since at least the 1920s
leaving you to wonder and squirm

There is no division of parts
like an ammonite or the Eiffer Tower

Amazingly
there is no e-book version
nothing to put on your Kindle
to use to shamelessly cruise your kind

This is not paper you can riffle with your thumb
making a sound like a paper airplane that's starting up

There's no terracing of sentences like Macchu Pichu
a man's urban engagement of culture
this is not my life

This is not a man pretending to be a bull elephant

an exceedingly well-educated, exceedingly vengeful bull elephant

This is not twelve dollars but cheaper
if you got it used like I did
This is clearly not a book
because it sleeps in a bed
and wakes up talking to itself
It doesn't have a spine to make it all work
it's not a global positioning system inside art

It shows no generosity towards peers it has roped to its body

There is no outstretched hand with a bar code
no slap and caress of its alma mater
which gave it mother's milk and early sex

no poetry that's actually very nice
like a YouTube video made with only a drop of red dye
slowly dissolving in a glass of water
really slowly to a Cocteau Twins song

This is not a habitat I have abandoned
but return to periodically to defend with all the bloodthirstiness
of Vlad the Impaler
this isn't that

this is not a haunted birdfeeder like the others

there are no blank endpapers anywhere to rest your eyes

because those are expensive

and this is a production with little to no expense

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