Robert Stanton


(for Debbie Krupski)

Collaborate badly. Render text sexy. Communicate everything. Every creeping thing. Every avenue a
   crossroads. 'Everything will burn once the light goes out.' Some things are eternal. (The possibility of
doubt, for instance.) Context will elucidate all. It tastes of transgression. It smacks of levity. Sheepscar.
   Wakefield. Lollies with bears' faces. Mother o' two. Queen of Bulgaria. Feeling your way over the
landscape. The air, airbrushed. Spent the morning wrapping dinosaurs. Vague change in tempo, under
   rubble. Pun wouldn't work in America. 'How good do you feel?' Completeartwork. Going spare. In-
ept and apt. Useful focus of attention. How 'things' work. No more 'stolen' time. Magnificent, and yet
   somewhat turgid. 'Take that hill.' Is it 'knife' or 'heart' that is repeated? Running faces (a lively
collection of crazy items.) Load up on sexy effects. Think all yr knowledge into what you see. Thin &
   unpleasant. 'Did I tell you this before?' Those things you think make noise, but don't. Knowledge is

a void. Avoid the yellow snow. Wanted: hands too big unspool the sky. 'Tell me I am saved: that will
   be news.' Millennia. Eggs and sugar (and brandy). Your arm may be aged 80 or over. Bagged and
tagged. 'Their philosophy is complete, but infinitely, insanely silly.' Man Working in the Middle of the
   Road. Transfigured house red. Put a sensible faith in him. Verse like water (Merrill). Let my machine
talk to me
. Goods Inward. Dislodged hairpin, seen. A strict machine. Tortoise staying resolutely
   on its feet. The passing squall. The afterglow (appears too good to be true because it is). The body
is charged. Insects. Tissue. Dream (bad one) of mice. Perceiver (not). Life too short for 'objective'
   viewpoints. 1 dissonant note in the whole composition. A country man. An urban heart. (Unbearable
space opens. Alluding to something just slightly offstage.) That cut came down natural. Speed was 'of
   the essence'. Your favourite line has yet to be written. All that 'real world' stuff: 'trial' turning 'trail'

on the rebound. Shares a lot. Persevere (knot). You don't notice the landscape until it hits you. (Keep
   juggling. Something will fall eventually.) Daylight mush, the fog-erasure surging from horizons,
stoppered up. 'Each morning, the eviction; each, the stand.' Quoting yourself: ignoble crime. Better say
   not. Heterodox beauty (the oldest hedgerow in the area — noticeably so). 'Dead finch lives on salt.'
('Thrown in bitter / urgent tap / water-glitter / fake a nap.') Marvellous little flurries of attention: world
   worth more than metaphor. 'DarlingRob' — to stave my embarrassment. Or his. ('Natter quicker /
uliginous / fame, the wanted / latent fuss.') Twin Christmas trees on the balcony of the Liberal Club (on
   Smiddy Hill, in Pickering): festive upright dictators. Dark street fears. Uneaten apples. All fingers
in all pies. A pair of dentists. No suitable posts. 'Death by immoderate labour.' Nothing unaccountable
   occurs. Confidence tricks that all might admire. Brave foxes. Crystal formations of salt and ice — those

mortal enemies. You simply don't regard your own life as interesting enough. Caught like that, in that
   situation, you too, you believe, would use violence: a nasty thought. 'Christ, this is messy.' Brotherly
feeling for the hooting owl — alone and primed. Calling God 'Lord'. Brave foxes. The 'just word' that's
   just a word. Brave new foxes. Pyroclastic flow. 'It's her face in the picture!' Test & being tested. A
big Romantic noise. Silly. 'I miss you, we all do.' People from all over Europe & the world. Your life
   adheres too much to books — your head half-textual, half-reactive, sensitive, the feeling of a bad chip
within a tooth. A nice edition with Thoth on the cover. 'I am writing you this poem.' Mr. Baby. String
   with no end. A festival mentality. No hope of reprieve. The mince pie-induced headache seemed a
necessary correlative to the ongoing reading, horrible & wonderful. The moral force of penguins. The
   castle your parents made for you. Adamant desire for repetition is aesthetic. 'If it worked once, it'll

work again.' Snappy TLA to sum up mental activity. Nothing's as weird as it sells itself. Steam whistle
   replicates nausea. Infrastructure holding up (just about). Time will edit. No paper copies. Incidence
counters bias. Not sure how it would want to commemorate itself, which words to use and how to place
   them. Undignified escape. Surround-edit. Sense-surrounds. 'I do not live here; am not at home.' Or
am. Snow equals dread, its drifts and slush. The second person. Late night inspiration sessions, the pen
   flowing away (or not: drying up, forcing scribble — fear of losing words, ideas) almost not at your
behest. How artificial that reads: authentic mugs authentic. Sheets on steps. White gloves hide rash,
   sores. Over-productivity seems optimistic. Look at something! Describe it! Eek out life's ebbs. 3-D
fails to translate. Talk too much, feel too little. See nothing. Wave. Again. Wave. . . . Hmm . . .springy,
   the snow ghosts all visible surfaces: the eye hooks on nothing. Not enough to last. (Humbled before

event, a contrite heart. Distinction between sub- and un-conscious. Proper and well-intentioned [i.e.
   annoying], parents stamp graves. Elegant vistas of subtle decline: the cityscape pampers the eye, that
regal sense. Satire spikes the mixture: moral uplift loaded down. Tinkering with metabolism. The grass
   is greener [period]. A narrative of teeth. Some residue on everything. Red letter blue Monday. Not a
perceiver.) Turn to writing in times of stress. Like lichen. Drip tap/cartoon chick. No more thoughts
   tonight: a draining day. Used as directed. Lost words mourned. The point of intersection in the wound
blood-darkened, exact: an iris. Six eyes, all around, signifies circumspection. This forgotten copy of
   Lucretius: where, and when, did you buy it? Words expect a little more move. Rot predates fruit and
all hell loose. Finish toil. 'It is now safe to turn off.' 'A provocation to reaction is all it is.' Humus, leaf-
   mould, residues of snow. Glitch in the face of such. Marvellous entertainment! The printing faint and

patchy — life of words, familiar shapes of letters — clinging to their meaning on the page, threatened
   constantly by nonsense and oblivion even, pulsing to a sense drawn to the surface, to be spied: a
covenant. 'Tomorrow is Christmas day.' Today is. Aware you are awake. Gift-trampler. Six further
   occasions: elaborate that feeble glow. Eaten with cheeky speed — my goodness! Festive glut. An early
night. End of an epic. Television as compensation, debt. 'She likes surprises.' Joy of skin
   regeneration. You as sample subject, moving through an environment. Landscape invested in & in-
fested. A lone question mark decides career (i.e. career decidedly). Divided line. Noble heroics on
   film only. See nothing else, ever. Lilac-white light cuts clouds. (The pen dictates the mood, the lines
flow on / Without relation to the thinking mind, / Which, in abstraction, sits deaf, dumb and blind / To
   all but its own circling. Go on: / The spurting words denounce revision — / Unstaunchable meaning

badly timed / Sets its own measure, pace — will not rewind / For docile onlookers. Go, pen, go on: /
   Beyond the wilful search for subject, go, / And leave a scribbled trail no-one can read / Except your-
self — no-one need ever know / Your tastes, opinions, thoughts — your inward need / For anything be-
   yond an un-neat page. And so, / Your ink runs slow before your readers feed.
) Why do you do such
stupid things? 'Well, why?' Relics of a future that never occurred. Stone-carved, a frailer medium than
   words / Or even flesh, if memory retain / No knowledge of its use or culture
. . .stop: this second-
guessing ancestors is getting nowhere: stop. Accumulated psychic energy. Unhealthy and unhappy
   in your skin. The skull feels unstable, raw and uncomfortable in its unchosen poise — ache and skitter.
Brilliant selections all unheralded! Upset is the main course/road. 'I seek solitude.' Speak for yourself.
   Imperious master grants novice apprenticeship (a dream). Here is the abstract, absent, tangible. Here

is; there isn't (except reported — to our loss). The rain's impressions, soaking fields. Another armed
   exemplar, getting on. We always need more cheese. We were a staff of ten. Smashed-windscreen
stars and silver-dagger moon so bright — too bright, like slashes in reality (joyous wound!). The fog of
   morning calming & expletive. You seem to spend your life asleep on buses. Jest or gesture? (Jester
gesticulating madly, under.) Avoid transgressions. Children resembling gods. Eyes in prison. Wave. A
   nervous disorder attended to: delay, frustration-central. Sigh and curve. An elbow room. Bizarre and
wondrous early weirdness. Luminous, Disney-fied moon in actual sky. An 'iron argument': 'emblems
   of barbarism' on the walls. Visual echoes: colour: white, yellow, green, black, red. Spatial rhetoric,
compositional similarities — don't go for that model. A nice guy, largely. Everyday libretto. Sin and
   cure. Book's jacket faded by sunlight, radically. Heat-induced (motion-induced) car-sickness. Auto-

motive. Wave. (A swimming consciousness among the bergs.) 'Go on yr nerves.' Life and soul. In and
   out of town. Ironic train whistles. Boon to go. Wave. (An answer to something earlier.) Everything
. Unwholesome and substantial — you know that. Everything responding. Tapdance time! 'A
   question of degree / between fourteen and thirty millionths / of an inch.' An itch. Accustomed now
to 'noise'. Interference. An abstract earth, the lode-'stone' of minerals, of precious things — as liquid
   (actually) as tears before they form, still hanging round the eye: as liquid as. (Too neat! Too neat! The
instinct hums. Bones ache.) Travelling on, further. Perception on the hop. Each creeping thing. Each
   one. Everything distorts. Moving through an environment — a sample subject, reactive. Three Letter
Acronym. You're no perceiver. Inoculated. Corroborate baldly. Render sex testy. Text'd. Inner (in
   a) ruin. Put up bunting. Togethernest. Run ruin. ('Whoever laughs next gets the doll, so quick!')