'The Mystery of False Attachments'

Now available from Word Palace Press

The following poems are the opening of a series of 140 “fragments” in a new book of mine, The Mystery of False Attachments, set for publication later this month by Word Palace Press in California. The fragments gathered here are extracted and reset from earlier poems and/or newly composed for this edition, while a spectacular series of accompanying visuals are drawn from “deep images” (through the Hubble Telescope) of the furthest reaches of the newly visible universe. The structure of the fragments themselves (centered, sans serif typeface) is largely determined by their original appearance as a series of postings on Facebook. 


The book is the result of a collaboration with Paul Lobo Portuges, publisher, and Garrett Stotko, book cover and layout designer.


No world more clear

than what we see

in dreams

nor more amazing


I open up

my mouth & hear

a multitude

of voices


I aim a question at

the universe

but a trillion others answer

in its place


Hand in hand

the dead walk in a line

hoping against hope

like children


Eager to break thru language

& touch life

I crack my head against

a mirror


A deeper image

leaves the world behind

still deeper where time ends

& yet another universe begins

absent all seeing


In the way words


or fail to

I found my truth


The smell of mackerel

was the greatest poem  


was promises


I have a feeling that

my tongue speaks words

because my throat

keeps burning


I bear a hundred names

I sound them

one by one

but none rings true


All who die are equal

where a cruel nirvana

waits for them

& man’s a wolf to man




The age of the assassins

more alive now than in memory:

All history moves into reverse

a swerve in time

to make a perfect circle


The mystery is all contained

in speaking — then the little silences

surround my words — like poetry

I breathe them in & out


The calculus of two plus two

the mystery of

false attachments

still persists


Or from a more distant time when “deep image” only meant a construct-of-the-mind (poesis), the following was how we spoke: “The deep image is the content of vision emerging in the poem.” And again: “The deep image rises from the shoreless gulf: here the poet reaches down among the lost branches, till a moment of seeing: the poem.”From which the other, deeper sight emerges slowly: “the farthest probe of all they call / ‘deep image,’ / galaxies condensing / in the perfect poem.”