the insomniac’s apple tree and a pig paler than its own star
the pinky swearing ghost of my rib
my self-published (on demand) Lulu books are here:
** 20% off all print books, there, thru October 3rd with coupon code of SAVETODAY **
[earth is part earth and there’s a hole in the sound I made you from]
published December 2015
published March 2016
[shuteye in the land of the sacred commoner (& other poems)]
published June 2016
published June 2016
~ this is a combined publication of these four collections: earth is part earth and there’s a hole in the sound I made you from / MOON tattoo / infant*cinema / shuteye in the land of the sacred commoner [& other poems] ~
[depictions of reentry]
published August 2016
speaking of books, and of talking to myself, I said some things about two recent, and excellent, books of poetry:
Nothing Good Ever Happens After Midnight, Sarah Marcus, GTK Press
marshland moon, Eleanor Gray, Dink Press
an animal lost in a little church
a hallucinating buzzard
the house knows I’ve been sleeping in my car. my son opens an empty fridge. no one in the book has turned on a light. I am dying. I never got to make a habit
of this. I love more
(Dink Press 2016)
“(it is nothing, is nothing
…and so, where fables began)” – from [Lady’s Slipper]
if there is no card
I didn’t know how to end things. I threw a soft doll
at a bullet.
I was trying to be quiet
a safe word.
The way swimming plays with my shadow. The prop
The missing child learns a new word. Not from me. Not that I remember. Our favorite program? A previously ruined nostalgia.
“a nameless sensation which perpetually haunts the body” – from [and then, Monsters]
I have a look I want to give loss.
“I want to say goodbye, I want
time to say goodbye” – from [Skeletal, Furred]
In my dreams I am ugly. In my dreams I am not differently awake.
“and so, what then of
colossal sleep, “ – from [Zero Beauty]
Remnant and Root:
“there is no language that can articulate what it is I suffer by, or do not suffer by- like all the sufferings suffers I am…” – from [Inactive Currency]
“/ do I even know of longing / I know of being held / “ – from [Wormwood]
“how do I
…love the very gnat of self” – from [Plox]
“holy, holy the black asterisk of wound
for the child I never was” – from [Languid Limbo]
“ ‘murmur’ I had forgotten the word
ash without meaning, death without purpose”
a song, an urn, a stairwell” – from [Susurrus]
This is a book. The title, to me, is very alone…and, intimacy, the most distant of permissions.
barton smock, reflections on marshland moon / poems / eleanor gray / (Dink Press 2016)
person, eleanor gray:
free mail shipping or 50% off ground shipping AND 20% off all print books on Lulu today with coupon code GETITNOW20
mine, self published, are here:
some recent poems:
hunger my contraceptive
someone to boil
afraid of its shadow in a previous life. the drowning of nothing’s
in a lifeboat
after egg, her memory
the untouchable redness
the sunburnt scar on a fisherman’s arm
I was a doorstep baby and brother a treehouse.
moon of the injured. moon of the blind.
the nude’s failure to stay awake in a laundromat. the suicide of the copycat toddler. nine types of catfish. a worm’s tongue. god’s last name. the orphan’s timekiller.
mid polygraph, I lose
/ the loneliness
of its food
animal then man then woman. god was the god of grief. one saltwater thing to another
[his impressions of the experiment]
my closest frat brother looks at the toad and says frog motherfucker. tackles me. fact: there is a certain kind of toad that by staying still can kill a drug dog. in this country, a man can sell doves from the back of a white van. a man can run out of doves. my ghost is obsessed with caterpillars. it doesn’t matter what you say. they found that woman.
infant, the sooner
I have this baby I’m not afraid to use.
you pretend to shoot
and I’ll pretend
to fall. we’ll make a day
of never talking.
the missing crow of thorns.
they wanna put my teeth on a billboard. mom doesn’t care. cremate the moon.
[I lose you when I sleep]
I’d have gone grey
during the gospel
of the bruise
being alone never hurt anybody. I ask online about a coat hanger. in person about a stork. symbolism is dead. it’s not that kind of garden.
[I am, emptiness, out of breath]
in a wet dream on fire
he is trying
(it is not hunger that eats the horse)
I am past the age of what
in a former life
I died as, a spoon
is a fork
asleep in the hand of god
[the museum of minor fictions]
of your mother’s
the book I brought to burn
the pair deciding which hand
would come between us
I caught the poor mask
on its own
I am ugly and you are not
[a dream for the blue pen in my father’s wrist]
it was being
but her brother’s
cough, how it ruined
but the etiquette
of the crucified
sex, make your face.
my father returned a clock
deaf as a housefire
my brother was raped
tents, he pulled our mom
from a clown car
[her impressions of the experiment]
his animals hiccup somewhere within the contagious yawns of god. his tumor is the crow of the ocean. the foot they hope to find me with is not yet purple. I shred a tiny pillow but your baby ain’t blind.
a bird watches my brother eat a parrot
my new diet requires me to have
language is a broom
between the legs of a showered orphan
is a sponge
from the story of her stomach’s exile
the hole we’re in has disappeared. we sleep on the gospel of baby mudlung. I pray mostly for people to get hurt. I don’t have a brother. he’s all alone. sister will smoke anything. a worm from the vacuum, the lice from nostalgia. I have a tv in my room that wants to play piano. I have a toy car and a turtle. it takes forever.
[the red church]
I babysat for children whose mothers didn’t want to come downstairs. I was driven home by men so drunk they knew my house like a muscle. the children ate what I made. I taught boys how to fake an illness and girls how to ask for pets. I could change a diaper and smoke at the same time but then it got away.
a mongrel circles the stump of a tree. a spider from the angel’s dream goes on to spin a caterpillar. mom slips in and out of pregnancy. it’s my first time hearing a groundhog hate itself. you won’t crawl to anyone you haven’t seen swim.
and what would you have me imagine? a change of tense in a tale of abuse. a baby licking the palm of a doll. a spoon. a robot’s broken arm. a chalk outline of a worm. hunger’s tacklebox. our allergic sister’s suicide note. a calf eating its first canary.
[swimmer of the blue snow]
a bowl of soup bleeds to death
in the eatery
of my praying