Primitive State [excerpt]
Thingitation righteousness for pre-avail to drive away the mighty kraken
Put me in a room full of strangers and leave me alone
...cauldron in twine, disarray as fair game, keen ablution borne skeezed...
Forced into assertions by a lack of attention
...the warp we held out in readiness, taking wind off the table, the awe thus retrofitted
within the futility of cleanliness, that mere cost...
But I am not trying to achieve a general unity of impression, which anyway sounds like a
metaphysics of port authority
Clear-cut you are my enemy, alternate pen failing eternity
...bazaar residence, chatty folly, all perks, all codes...
If’n diffident glee
For the appearance of a glove, designed in wood to imitate a mama whooping crane from
the neck up, would prevent the little chick from being humanized by coming through a
hatch in the wall to commence feeding time
Where its nothing personal happens
Selling points envying the rim
The patter of claws as I upload Brahms in the dark
He demonstrated the location of his injury by touching the trainer’s parallel area
...video courtesies, seeing the quiddity a five-headed eagle brings to light, in a touch...
A late run at respectability about to come up short
Mellow radiation lulls with rosemary
The window so far behind the what
...drums in the bleep, four savory flavors in mind, forgeries bloody coming after me...
It was indeed a terrible idea to lend a valuable book to a painter
Soon I must go to sleep and simulate someone at rest
Trilobite death wish to replace beer funnels downstairs with
She pours herself into recognition as if every moment is a new one
Should I hide the ointment from the truth
The industry of analyzing that which may
String straps suck
Should I gnaw on everything with my five pesky teeth
To sit back down still high amidst the aggro-squirrel set under amber street light, kid
asleep, paper catching drizzle, phone lurking in pocket
Standards, such as yours, don’t exist
...risers tracking reliquaries, gradations of skill at filling a thirty-second spot...
At some point it became spontaneous to have a plan
A daydream that everyone speaks only in acronyms
About this Poem
"This is a run of material from about sixteen pages inside a thirty-eight page piece called 'Primitive State,' the entirety of which is made of modular sentence-addled lines and their bracketing horizontal spaces. The lines with surrounding ellipses run occasionally through the whole thing as a kind of on-going listing within the structure, which is itself a long list of consciousness smears that probably shouldn't go together. But on the Joe Brainard premise that there are no colors that don't go together, they kept going together anyway."
Anselm Berrigan is the author of five books of poetry, including Notes from Irrelevance (Wave Books, 2011).
Date Published: 2013-04-04
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/primitive-state-excerpt