this rectangular artifiact

an invisible hand between shoulderblades
guiding me up the university hill
the phrase slowroll comes to mind
but that was for box cars and pierogies and the color purple
smooth is a substantial runner-up

_______

one of my students says
tuneyards is coming to town
and another responds to me with an
aye aye cap’n

_______

i guess incorrectly:
jacaranda tree
so what is the name for those
hot pink blooms
on an otherwise bare branch?

_______

i imagine the way i enunciated the ‘t’
could have made you uncomfortable

_______

everything you said, liz
across that hi-top table
was detail material
and it is a shame
i recorded nothing

_______

i hugged someone today (or yesterday)
and i can’t remember where we were
or who it was
but their hair smelled like rose

_______

pen stuck in your hair at the atm
that was weird
you say
which makes it that much more hilarious

the other joke is that we never quite know
what i’m laughing at

_______

in the last minute collaboration intro i include (about cristina rivera garza):
one of the greatest things i’ve taken away from my experiences as a student of CRG’s is that writing is not something we happen to do, but a practice we engage in that utilizes a system (language) that was constructed long before we inherited it, which means every writing choice we make has the potential to be a dialogue, a collusion or a dismantling of the forces that built it.

no one is more vulnerable as when they are under the sky
she reads
you can live in the forest without having a theory
of living in the forest

because this rectangular artifiact
called the book
we communicate with our death

a paragraph is an extreme sport
a line is a prayer and a curse

_______

not sure if this is phenomenon enough to claim
as unnamed but:
the refusal to eat food (in waiting rooms, airports,
auditoriums)
because of the inappropriateness of its food-smell

_______

all you needed to teach in an urban environment like oakland
he says
was a pulse

_______

how sometimes fact
is like a punch
for instance: krupps and braun (coffee-maker companies)
once manufactured ovens for nazi death camps

_______

when we speak we are afraid
our words will not be heard
nor welcomed.
but when we are silent
we are still afraid

so it is better to speak
remembering
we were never meant to survive
(audre lorde)

_______

light exists outside of language
so it is impossible
to locate the words
for moon cleaving cloud
silver spill
above eucalyptus grove