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April 26, 2017 / barton smock

{had you liked}


it is not a great deal, but Lulu is offering 10% of all print books today with coupon code of LULU10

mine, self-published, are here at something strangely named an ‘author spotlight’:

note: book previews on site are books entire. will send free PDF to anyone requesting, and free hard copy of any available title to anyone interested in writing a review. (such requests can be made to

also, I still have copies of a privately self-published chapbook, {BASILISK}, free upon request made to



a reading from my collection {depictions of reentry}

some words by Kazim Ali on my collection {eating the animal back to life}


some poems, recent:



in my plainness a seesaw

in her dream jaw her dreamboat’s jawbone

in our daily belly

in the church of rolling our own
a film
a film

in a rug made of bread a tooth made of bread

in mannequins where small things kneel that are living

in claw-marks and in jigsaws of the crucifixion


crows balloons of the strangled



poetry and suicide
the two left feet
of a child
forced to play
a waste
of strangeness


[hills and stars]

for her date with the giant, mom is putting on her face. our time, invisible chameleon, is over.

brain of a white mouse.



it is common for the male cannibal to carry the skin of the due child

fasting is a sin and starvation a commandment

orphans are given home movies and edible pillows

language is a head
we bring it cake


[dying at home]

bring little, for I am a small room.

my clothes are yours and have always been lonely.

from nowhere
came beauty
to avoid

bruise, ye
from nightgown
to blanket.

be kind, history

to those
in my dream.


[ribbon on a blindfold]

is death’s



pain a shadow’s bed-hopping rain puddle

a boy
in a homesick



is voice
the shadow
of song

whose blood
has feathers

April 26, 2017 / barton smock


you look like someone
who’s not


before he died

April 26, 2017 / barton smock


the past
your child

April 26, 2017 / barton smock

too dark now over nothing to cry

a clock
by a scar.

the scalpel
the ear’s

birthplace, hide your own.

no animal
in the making
of god.

April 25, 2017 / barton smock

god is silent in every language

mom is driving. mom is washing the spider that closed her mouth. sister has a stick of gum but says she doesn’t. dad is half-asleep and cutting the fingernails of the babies he dropped. there’s a scab on my arm that looks like my brother’s nose. we pass church after church. sound horn for buried bees.

April 24, 2017 / barton smock

would you say, mouth

that god
made a deal
with nothing

April 24, 2017 / barton smock


mowing the lawn
dad swallows
a bug.

sister is folding her eyelids back
and brother

his diaper
stays on.

mom on a small map
is making

the animals are what god sees
in animals. soon

a birthmark
on a tooth.