17 October 2011

Study in Pavilions and Safe Rooms

Here's the proem to Paul Foster Johnson's new Portable Press number, Study in Pavilions and Safe Rooms, just to give you something to ruminate on as you start your week! PFJ punctuates what he calls "Panic Rooms," "Safe Rooms," and "Pavilions" with these "I did something" poems, and they have consistently proved my favorite extensions in the collection. I'm especially digging the caesurae here! Here's Paul:

I did something emblematic of a life in the Aughts
several of us narrated, twitching to repeat a song
encapsulating one feeling. In a hunched posture,
clicking furiously, I was shocked by the self-idealizations
of my enemies. Knowing their limitations I noted well
the eloquent strands of one dressed like a box jellyfish.
An outfit defined the contretemps and form
drew it out forever. Pathos in the guise
of a repeating song buffeted indifferent objects.
No one made tea or borrowed from my life
of beauty. In this life I dedicated myself to deciding
whether I was offended. Here I reenacted something
trying not to look bored because I was not bored
but deeply interested in preserving a record
of all transactions if only to fling it into the ether.

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