Emergency-orange survival blanket don’t feel like gem sleeves
except in case of acceptance or alchemical chain. Dear desire
to stay awake I am acute acceleration of the strobe strobe strobe strobe
through gel pigmented strata. No fierce pain but paisley
aches all down the tongue-pink inside of my dress. Lantern head sway
trace a smile wide as dopamine, perverse joy of falling back
(the bubble in a perfectly inverted aluminum level).
Face down, new moon bed taut as nurse’s lipstick
finger cramps a countercyclic twist round this aortic
pencilbound lost articles diary. Burn and dodge, trace opioid
receptors heavy as Jupiter. Heatstroke hours of fallenness; became
sappy for tomorrow — rag paper day preening as though chlorophyl,
serotonin hillside overwarm like a wasp-hive in the sun. No proscription,
you canoe unheard-of channels in this active caldera.
Prescription silver ribbons wound like stockings: me,
footbound under the A/C vent, my ocean veins, my vital husk.
Now lick my blood and fuck me like a blowtorch. Always
then I’m sleep sealed in freon; already acetylene, I
infix a shade of byzantium. A shade of the silk road. Your shadow any shade
but gone. Oxytocin, please. Let that first press happen to me —
heavy, bright, embraced in dazed and aching panes of cave ice.
I chop daikon and carrots and leeks in the dark.
My face in the shower’s a welcome distraction.
With chirring cicadas obscuring the target
I’m walking at night and the streetlamps are missing.
He’s twelve minutes late. I’m pretending to smoke.
The wind blows in gusts, except on the porch;
I pull down my sweater and don’t push the doorbell.
A ghost sends a text from a box the next morning.
I buy up her jewels from pawnshops on Lake.
I shut off the lights just to see what will happen.
The songs on the radio run up a tally
along with the taxis and women in furs.
A ship in the clouds flies a flag made for rain.
I turn to the laundry and sort out the colors.
Everything is terrible forever
Every thing amazing & no one is happy
Any bad brainstorm now molded in plastic
Consumers like us home in like amoebae
Thieves like us
It's a thrill
& carrion birds know by logo
Which paper bags hide burger slag,
which mangled wings
It's best to decide elections in reality
Television style, don't you think?
So put the transistor on trial
Hive mind for oneironauts
On magic beans of transitory pleasure —
For instance here is the moon underfoot,
Here is a clone of your childhood pet
Dropper of glutamate,
Please and thank you
We find uses for the meat of the overlords
More tender than government butter
But always someone is snapping us candid
On manic nights dancing in neon-
Hung paradise, glossed by transocean flight
Getaway, the zeitgeist &
Con trails signal unnatural weather
Sky writing This is the future
Paranoid Style in American Social Media Content
1. I Am Coming Home Again Unless It Hails Inside Again
You’re asking a question. My mouth is a liar.
I don’t have a hand that can write like a wing.
I can’t put this bone-mask beneath my face down.
Wording the truth is a rough science, and
someone has dialed all the facts down to zero.
Memory is reënactment, absurdist
drama produced by rats, performed in the round.
These keyholes are journals in visible ink
on invisible paper shaped like a femme.
Video lenses record only swarms
of pixilized phantasms equal to no one.
Most of our fucking has not yet existed.
You read each biography folded in half,
then fold them again into featherless cranes.
We hear ten words that my larynx ensorcels.
You read upside down. I hid all the passwords.
2. It Is a Code That All the Roof Beams Howl
I’m coming inside. Her mouth is a lyre.
I don’t have an ear that can catch like a kite.
Checking the story at quarter to midnight
I worry I’m sleepwalking into tomorrow—
memories flailing, cranes in a funnel cloud.
Her knuckles are skinned from fisting the walls,
as I taste when I find a warm absence again.
This page is take two and it writes like a rat
gnawing the histories pulping the facts.
Lately those mysteries are written on milk, but
what she believes in is the end of her life.
Her exes have moved to an addressless house
of jealous mosaics the color of keyholes.
A note from her friend says she isn’t her friend.
She speaks ten words that could hide in a doorframe.
The street is still wet. It listens for footsteps.
About the Author:
Benjamin Goodney's work has appeared in The McNeese Review, Best New Poets, Hotel Amerika, Pacifica Literary Journal, Guernica, and elsewhere. He is co-founder of the literary magazine Storm Cellar. He took two degrees in philosophy from Illinois and resides along the Minneapolis–Orlando corridor.
About All Accounts:
All Accounts and Mixture is an annual online feature celebrating the work of LGBTQ writers and artists. For this series, we seek work from authors who self-identify as "queer," while acknowledging that this designation is subjective and highly personal. Our goal is to provide a forum for writers whose voices might be mis- or underrepresented by the literary mainstream. Submissions open May 18th and run through June 19th. Poetry, prose, visual art, reviews and interviews will all be considered.