you are in the diode archives fall 2009



Sparkly Poem

I crossed my fingers behind my back and spelled quickly. It was in the day before incarceration or the institution of subtle words such as blistering sun. I looked down and oozed lightly, almost like a corpuscle.

Or a dive bomber.

She’s having a birth, a sort of volcanic rush of dust and doom. She sold her house for the new arrival but she kept her glitter pants.

And I understood that the reason for language dissipates completely over the lights of Hollywood, Florida.

Transliminally speaking.

                                            (Did we hear it?)

It was like a plop and then all the Elvis’ wigs and zeros started shaking and shimmying. 

I wasn’t surprised that we heard it in secret. I was only concerned about stars then, the smallest ones sparkling in Latin.


Polyramble, Vulturerealm, Blamesyrup, Rhinovalues

Therefore the naked and living experience in which God has already begun to speak could no longer be our concern.  In other words, in a world where the face would be fully respected (as that which is not of this world), there no longer would be war.
                                                                                               —Jacques Derrida, Writing and Difference (107)

Or not.

Sometimes I’ve got toes that move around at night. Up the bed down the wall in fever or feverish dishes. There. A whole set. 

And then the rain comes with white feathered pudgy peoples.

They sing plastic treccia watch and low slung boot jean.  We all regale the pliable battle.

The curse of the mechanical horse.  Zitterlings. Plenchents. Oreliabus.

Lacerate the glittering yarn.  Get your guns!


Still, junkets of Sam I Ams along the way. All that guile.

You can knit a sweater but you can’t make it fit the proletariat. 

A perfect cap is pretty nice on a sunny day.

A mitten is lachrymose if you lose it.



I was blabbering about how cold I was when I tried to leave South Florida. How, even when I hit Orlando, my toes froze in my flip flops and I ran a high fever. Mercifully, I’m stuck here now.
                                                                                                —Virginia Woolf

Mercy, a five-letter word, never suffers from cold toes. She is never full. Her tongue is tied five times but she can still speak. For example, thus, therefore, thunk!

Still, her death was an event for me. I held her birdcage body. I counted her last breaths. She teetered and was history.

Mercy. Merciless. Mercy seat.

Mercy our deaths and rings. Mercy the events and soups. Mercy our ice and humanity.  Mercy our suits and graveyards. Mercy the discovery. Mercy Lou Dobbs. Mercy the immigrants and their paper. Mercy the earth and poems. Mercy the sentences and our cold feet. Mercy I could. Look at me.

I was born with feet.

With a cowboy boot on each hand. Like a pataphysical flower.


from The Cadillac Manuscript

Is the way we spell simply a reflection
of our desire to be a small part of history? 


For it is in the swarmy closet of the present
that rules of grammar procreate.


I hate rules of grammar or any rules that
require glue.

I hate using Q’s.  In medieval manuscripts,
you might struggle to find a Z.

May I have a kiss? May I take off my denim jacket?
Has she lopped-off her own head?

I wish I had a Cadillac.


There is a scene outside.  Can you describe it? 
Can you let it filter through your soul to reach
the deepest of underpinned non-meanings?

There is justice, certainly, but it’s often strangely
absent from the alphabet.

Yet, listen to cutlery. Nothing makes it forget.
It is always on guard, like a small onion waiting for his last rights.


Of course, his death was premature. (For him, in particular.)
I copied his face with my windshield wipers.
He drove away sputtering ells and esses.


The Value of Y          

                        (After about 12 iterations, what can you conclude about the value of y?)





Blurts:_____________(                 )_________

Y is the mind burning. It is the mind burning leaves.

I had red hair 11 years ago.  I loved it.  It came from the box, you know the one.  I can’t stop thinking about shoes. And cake, red cake. That bloody, seamless birthday coming up.  Love us all, Scorpios.

I needed to skip a space. I had green strips of hair once when I was boyish. I paced myself when stripping at Tracks during the accounting fiasco of Iran-Contra. I wore a skirt underneath my trench coat and summoned small gods.


The cult of the jujubes. Admission: 45 cents.

The pastel cult (Miami).

The cults of Mozart and Leonardo Fibonacci.

How many times does it take to count backwards in space next in line to enter the space station orbiter?


Sillymongering. Xenophobia. Grenadine.

There’s a half pint of milk in the fridge with snowcaps written in bold letters, 3-D almost. What should I do with it?

Where did all these numbers come from?  I thought I was on the Dumbo ride, and everything was spinning around and smelled like popcorn. 


Thwart, soup, sopa, cranberry. These are the things that go into a box that is buried bedlam. Below the makeshift cranium. In other words, I’m going to join a union.

There’s a footpath outside my door and I’m powerless to stop it.  


Neil de la Flor’s solo work has appeared in Hotel Amerika, Lodestar Quarterly, Barrow Street, Scene 360, Court Green, Sentence, and elsewhere. His first collection, Almost Dorothy, won the 2009 Marsh Hawk Press Poetry Prize and is due out in January, 2010.

Maureen Seaton’s most recent books are Sex Talks to Girls, a memoir from the University of Wisconsin Press (2008), winner of the Lambda Literary Award; Cave of the Yellow Volkswagen, poems from Carnegie Mellon University Press (2009); and America Loves Carney, a prizewinning chapbook from Sow’s Ear (2009).

Kristine Snodgrass’s poetry has appeared in many publications, including Coconut, 2River View, and Apalachee Review. She is an instructor of English at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, Florida.