word for/word
issue 6: summer 2004
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C. S. Carrier






White Dress


The clock is turning to a god.

Behind the curtains the moon's nowhere where I left it. Across the river a radiotower
blinks a red skullcap not afraid of falling or curses.

You're always just under the skin along my longitude always with slender fingers that
trackball each vertebra.

You fill each bone blue testosterone.

What's to possess in another language? to bleach?

Screened to fronts of shirts coffee mugs. You're suspended above a windtunnel and
captured in silver gelatin New York.

I could play solitaire. Maybe hide my clothes in the backyard or set them on fire in the
closet. My flower could slink along the airducts.

Windows open in the sheets no more.

I want my eyebrows numbed and the eros that bow-ties your pigtail braids to be stilled.







I want to take away the anvils in my ears and take away the rocks that sing.

Battery operated candlesticks still burn the last secrets of Christmas. The windowsill's
carapaces know no more lullabies.

The river doesn't move with a swimmer's grace
and under is a sound I've gotten used to. How do I say my first emotion to long?

Your thin arms and legs emboss my neck.

Your hair is dark and lotus and is to my hands the air in a cave.
These are my fingernails.

If you pierced your nose would I still want the diamond to singe my tongue?

Wisps clouds begin eating the bells wreaths the lawn Santa. My eyes scratched red.

I whisper your name comes.

You've bound my wings with embroidery and suspended them now from your deviated







I drink warm milk from a ritual cup.

Pressed between two stones makes the lines on your face red and those on mine blue.

Is it not enough I'm sleeping in an empty bed forsaking aeronautics and always trying to
call myself fire?

You could give me garnet brocades. I'm made to write
your seams are a bridge lyric.

And where planets start and end is your life a glass case without air.

The river is impossible to get rid of. Does it devour or nurture? whose back does it pour
from? and what's to know?

Your room on Main is opposite the moon and mine opposite the sun.

I know under the honeysuckle a fox waits for the edge of daybreak.

Some snow begins then your body dances under the thin bed then bouillon forms my
suffocating water.





In the shallows I stumble on a crowbar.
Cheek on a tire, I lift the crowbar
onto a narrow truckbed. The crowbar,
swaddled with sponges & black rocks.

I name it aurorealis. The crowbar
sheds its mask. The crowbar smirks the smirk
of those who fell from cliffs & came to life.
The crowbar, relativistic & covenant,

invents the orange muses of crowbar.
People leave heat pumps to touch the crowbar
to their feet because the crowbar
knows secrets the mailboxes & nickelodeons.

The crowbar wants to spend nights
beside a wrought iron fence. The crowbar
wants to lick my peppermint windowbox.
The crowbar remembered would rather be

a mutual fund, saxophone, vitreous humor.
The crowbar makes prideful the sun,
uses silence to dream with. The crowbar
says I should be hybridized with lilac,

everywhere's purple blossoms. The crowbar
says to sprout roots from the liver
so birds will nest & not drop fearing the sky.
I fall in love with the crowbar

the way the crowbar loves to fall in me.
The language of death enjambs the crowbar.
I'm carrying the crowbar up a hill
that overlooks paper smokestacks. The crowbar

in my hands, a seam of coal, a supercollider.
I put my ear to the music the crowbar
improvises & hear amnioticfluid. I know
the crowbar's being simply a crowbar.





Call me Lamb of Darkness, Lion Winter.
Call me Birthcanal Glasstube.
I rub the water's mouth with cracked hands.
Call me Bearer of Light.
I'm an archway in a library, I'm a forum, an inseminator.
I build the sledgehammer's teeth.
Call me Saint Astrolabe, the Sandaled.
Call me Eboulliance Pedestrian.
I come from plantations, I come from the roof, southern drawls.
My diphthong announces the way
sun colors the feet, oceans crossed.
Call me Mudchild Topiary with Twigs That Interstice.
Call me First Acreage of the Spliced Human.
My horns, benedictine in mercury, serve revolution.
I make salt on nautiluses, the surf, all right
under the gulls' screeches.
Call me Lost in Desert.
My hands nightly thread the joints.
Call me Elixir Forcefeeder, Bloodletter of Listeners & Nonlisteners.
I'm the nationality, polyps of chestplates.
I emanicipate the peripheral, the corneas.
Apples in my carotid swell with verbs.
Call me Wooden Schematic Drawn in the Dirtroad.
I look like a fish, I dance on water, my cobra a unit of measure.
Call me Blanquito, Blond Apothecary.
My skin filled with glass, limejuice, spermicide
is equationed, girdered, travelogued.
Call me Cannibal Knight, call me Cumin Exoticizer.
With thermostats & CO2 I bomb deserts 10 years east.
The previous me eats the Bronx.
Call me Sunflower Heroworship.
I'm the forehead's ash, the forehead demeanor, lightly carbonated.
Call me Bronzehero Currency of Lavabacked Crocodiles.
I spill humanoids onto a geodesic landmass.
My tail commas the sky,
lit with triangled flags. I'm existential.
Call me Starfucker Radiantcapture.
I catacomb dumpsters, look for a kingdom, find only pockets,
carpentry, schizophrenia, that bites criminals, steals
the insides of strungup poises, lures
widows with dry bread.
Call me Arsonist of Open Palms.
I set fire to hair, teakettles whistling, golum, the oxidizing I am.
I forgive & beg forgiveness, softened by dew,
the acceleration, the rush to unbuild.
Call me Remover of Doorframes, Elephantwallah Nowsayer.
In combustication I drum on silver bellies.
I lay pink marbles under riverbeds.
Call me Orifice Carryover, call me Lyric Turbine.
I scald, leave the father in repetitions.





C. S. Carrier's poems have appeared in Pleiades, Verse, Redactions, LIT, Castagraf, and Good Foot. He teaches creative writing at the University of Hartford and makes sandwiches as a Sandwich Artist at Subway

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