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(Soma)tic Poetry Ritual & Resulting Poem

You Don’t Have What It
Takes to Be My Nemesis

            —for Dorothea Lasky who also
            puts up with a lot of assholes

To the friend you thought was a friend until they tried to sabotage a publishing opportunity.  To the one who ripped your book in half on stage then wrote patronizing letters to the newspaper about how you should be writing and the poets you should be reading to become a real poet.  HAHA!!  To the creep who deleted your MP3 file because your reading was better than his.  There are others, lying, conniving, envious sour pusses without the courage to be loyal to the love of friends and shared ideas.  But finally to the worst of all, to the one you loved the most; your trusted collaborator, the one who wrecked true havoc, the gifted sociopath, the one you always dreaded, but they found you.  That one, the best liar you ever met who took a machete to your life, their drama akin to opera.  Even still they are given the parting words, “YOU DON’T HAVE WHAT IT TAKES. . . .”

Take notes about each of them for the poem, their names are unimportant as such cowards are rarely remembered.  Create a line of tiny photographs of their faces on your computer, ALL IN A ROW, and then print it out; this will be the rolling paper for a cigarette.  Cover their faces with equal amounts of the following dried ingredients:  Fennel seeds, pine needles, rose petals, mugwort, basil, white sage, red sandalwood powder, perique tobacco, and marijuana.  These ingredients qualm negative thoughts, shift gears for transformation, and also invoke prophetic dreams, clairvoyance, happiness, honesty, peace of mind, and marijuana because you put up with a lot of shit and deserve to enjoy yourself!  Roll it up, keep track of which enemy you are smoking, but smoke them all, SMOKE THEM ALL, sucking their faces into your lungs while writing notes for the poem, notes about the ones who didn’t have what it takes to beat you down, the ones who never deserved your friendship in the first place.  Exhaling their faces on a braid of smoke is more satisfying than the usual forms of forgiveness.  Find your poem in the notes and utterly relish your day!


I Feel So Lonely
When You Touch Me

                                                                like most people
                                                                ghosts want
                                               inquiring gender of
                                          tree quaking in shade
                                                 rips your collar to
                                                   pieces we meet
                                                 ourselves whole
                                                     at same time
                                                      order of the
                                                   way some will
                                                ruin themselves
                                             gentleness thrust
                                             into a clean glass
             ideate YES angling a wider indulgence
                                                    you and your
                                                    broken pencil
                                                         write it’s a
                                                       writing world
                                                       but do get
                                                       on with it
                                                       listen to
                                                    of trees
                                             interest rate
                                           with sunshine
                                  suffering passed to
                                        a hired hand  


CAConrad is the author of six books, including Ecodeviance: (Soma)tics for the Future Wilderness (Wave Books, 2014), A Beautiful Marsupial Afternoon (WAVE Books, 2012) and The Book of Frank (WAVE Books, 2010).  A 2014 Lannan Fellow, a 2013 MacDowell Fellow, and a 2011 Pew Fellow, he also conducts workshops on (Soma)tic poetry and Ecopoetics.  Visit him online at CAConrad.blogspot.com.