In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

  • Mongrel is to Madness like Fire is to _______________, and: The Monster is to Damned as Lariat is to _______________, and: Solve for X
  • Oliver de la Paz (bio)

Mongrel is to Madness like Fire is to _______________

A fire moved, taking warmth with it. Unthinkable, its cargo. It mirrored birds in their fatal plumes. Too heavy to fly, they drag the weight of themselves, beautifully.

As the fire trembles with motion, the fever also moves with a surprise like joy. Like a season on the brink of cool, yet holding. Holding on.

Let me say that all that brilliance held me. Alarmed me. Betrayed all my verbs. [End Page 45]

The Monster is to Damned as Lariat is to _______________

Asphalt, then lariat. The rope drags its wet silhouette into a trail of wounds. Little sidewinding torsos flashed in curlicues.

Sibilances between a record of low voices. Low hisses insisting on its “yes.” Its omnipotent “yes.” Around the knot, the slickened knuckle, tight against its groove, shirring strands adjacent.

The braid like rivulets against a window. The wet span of the noose splits what is done into undone. [End Page 46]

Solve for X

The body knows there is a world of glass and a world outside the bottle. The X is not real but a clutch of blue sequins. And there is still longing at X. A want to occupy. A want to splay the body in a meadow like it owned the meadow. X would just lie there encircled by a silent forest, full of atomized nothings.

Thoughts. Some type of bound expectation. Something mortal. Soon the nights are filled with brutal trees. The cool, an astringent on the skin. Soon the wrong X is dead wrong and the flowers at the body’s back open into eons and eons of X, looking. Looking where to go next. [End Page 47]

Oliver de la Paz

Oliver de la Pazʼs most recent collection is Post Subject: A Fable (U. Akron Press). He also co-edited A Face to Meet the Faces: An Anthology of Contemporary Persona Poetry. He teaches at the College of the Holy Cross and in the low-residency MFA program at Pacific Lutheran University.



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pp. 45-47
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