A more interpretable ark than this
Blood is song your party
Apprenticeship of what one can’t have
Changed to money usury and the
World what was worth having
Ends up broken yesterday’s news
Like the blue of earth
Seen from outside atmosphere like
An egg we must begin
Anything can be charged with value
Changed to money Madonna of
A different blue
Still there is not
Just failure and despair in this world
Corruption of the flesh, forgotten sex
Still blesses our other names.


Copyright © 2014 by Thom Donovan. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-a-Day on May 1, 2014.

About this Poem

“‘Thek’ was written after seeing the Paul Thek retrospective at the Whitney Museum a few years back. What was striking, among so much else in the show, were his uses of ephemeral material (newspaper, chalk, sand), as if to stage the work’s impermanence, the fact that all things will degrade, some faster than others. And this corruptibility is something I love about Thek. How it gets back to the body, grinding against the materialism of Warhol/Pop as well as the Neo-Platonism of postminimal and conceptual practices. Thek’s work I consider ethical in this regard.”

—Thom Donovan