“and even you forgot those brilliant flashes seen from afar” -Ruth Stone

RETURNING


I have returned / after
my roadside highway wire-cutter motel room autopsy
nervous breakdown model room display

crawling on hands and knees towards a state trooper
                                            in Ravensworth Shopping Centre, Springfield, VA

clutching my chest / lung(s)
mummy torpedo
jury disgusted
by CIA torture

I-495 RSO speedway cerebral
transmission breakdown / alternator
sniping breaths in the heart-core
chambers something over here stinks to, yes, pump the blood
stygian awakenings/ vegan bio-mass

Kenny vs Omega

I self-referee
elimination chamber

How is continuing the work of the text – how is that?
Death of
/ symbiotic options to copy and paste
             / like a whole world of consequences
to coagulate, user in a behemoth’s measure of
solitary bacchanal of self-depravity

a lemon
each morning

tetanus shot bulge attracting glaring eyes
a lonely road is always rough

so many endings in the bag / a new one to lengthen
elevator repair certification date / welcome
to maybe a different kind of elevator
‘How do you do?’ I ask laughing / at
the carpet inside
the Showboat lobby in Atlantic City
walking around the boardwalk is crazy

overturned beach surveillance booth
a backdrop of a suspended orb shooting 400 feet into the air over fried cheesy shrimp dough balls

by introducing fragments, incomplete
returning steadily pitching
dust like a beach wave

someone out of sight / pointed to trees

up against the ocean then
recited a lesson for beginners “How to

Swim” I fell out of it there, ended up
dousing my poor fat white saggy body
with corn chips, ouzo, marshmallow

either way—sink-or-swim—I drive on
deeper into the interior of the fucker
system
incomparable to how we breathe sometimes, lungs lined with wool catch
particulates broken free from esophageal chambers gathering

wet and incomprehensible, I am

Death is where I am, anyways, always returning to –
a clutched bundle of wax, tripping over paramilitary
flags and glass shards across from my dad’s grave

           where the run-off of motor oil drips down
           hill mixing with corpse-box gas emanations
           only here is where I can go to return to it, that
           moment where I am always returning, awake
           drifting in light or somnambulating in night
           like a cat curled/spiraled around a coffee tree

Appears in this issue
Ed Steck is the author of An Interface for a Fractal Landscape (Ugly Duckling Presse) & The Garden: Synthetic Environment for Analysis and Simulation (Ugly Duckling Presse).

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