Now through December 31st…order Philadelphia Poet Laureate Frank Sherlock’s Space Between These Lines Not Dedicated & receive a signed, limited-edition broadside by the author!
by Jose Angel Cuevas
translated by Frank Sherlock & Carlos Soto-Román
For the two million credit cards circulating in the city
We must not give them any credit in our hearts
Nor to the upcoming Sales Temples with their / discounts / coupons
/ new releases / super / nothing at all
Nor within our minds / maybe / nothing / nothing
Would it be possible to stop those drugged and disenchanted armies
with Nike shoe boxes and little Urban Outfitters space hats / sunglasses
and Anthropologie silk skirts in the illuminated Major Markets?
Hey, what does it all mean in real terms?
A metaphysical satisfaction of the object / to be another in front of the mirror
The froth of having and getting / Alright
to climb up the social ladder / the logic of the system / to feel good about yourself /
But could we not get entirely into the game of the hysterical
the self psychosis / that old shitty game?
PLAY PRACTICAL JOKES ON THE SYSTEM / sick jokes, for example
What if we all declare stop-payments?
What if we stop buying things for a whole month?
What if we organize a mass withdrawal from the Social Security System (who makes capital
scratching our money day by day?)
What about the goddamn health insurance system / the blank checks
those filthy businesses in the life of the fellow man?
Only the TV broadcasts its own grunts / that pit of unreality
Imagine // perfumes / ointments / beers of all brands
tic-tac, tic-tac and you can pay your first installment next month!
Mountains of smoking items / and down payments in cash!
Well / Hollow Head, stop it! / Nazi Skin
Stop! Shoddy Hardcore / cool as shit
you solicit spare change / you’re soliciting spare change in the streets
LET’S DESTROY IN OUR HEART THE LOGIC OF THE SYSTEM
No to the commercial spots, that fill the heads of the silent majority with garbage!
No more / No more.
A woman eating soap / asses bathed
in Coca-Cola / TV extras smelling armpits / models / producers / children
sales for the reinvention of the system / babies / old folks /
used as a yogurt image. Enough!
Do not buy anything today / not today / not today
Do not watch commercials today / no clearance sales / no special offerings
Not today / Not today
check yourself in the mirror / and in the large waves pounding
meditate on / the shores of this bleeding country
the rivers, what are they saying? They are speaking to themselves
But FOR WHAT?
Follow this arrow
Meditate in the homes built from cardboard / rain
over the dry food / sheets, wet clothes
And you / go down in your thoughts / over the poverty line /
Repeat: The Bottom, The Badlands, Southwest Kensington,
Logan, Point Breeze, East Oak, West Oak
I am seeing here / I am seeing in me
sticks, mucous, leaks, dust /
sing your psalm and speak to your interior.
Close your eyes / imagine what you’re talking about.
And if you can go on, follow your mind to Rittenhouse / Society Hill
Avenue of the Arts / let’s turn / to Old City / and come back
again and again without a pinch of resentment
or the taste of bile / these are just representation exercises
and for those who run down Walnut Street / thieves / dancers /
dealers / think of the huge silence of the popular
masses / these streets swept by semi-automatic weapons
The recent past. Conclude this meditation /
so let the TV on,
follow the images they offer / look out the window
watch the news / smoke a cigarette
Do you think we have hope?
What if we touch the power of the big and serene Capitals
Will we be massacred again? Will there be another Reagan, another Bush? Another 8 years?
Do you think so? Me too.
But let’s agree to turn off the televisions at the same time
we are so many in the same page / we are the 99%
SOMETHING COULD HAPPEN IF WE ALL AGREE
AT THE TIME, DAY, MONTH AND YEAR.
More than something could happen.
More than something.
Wait, specific instructions are on the way.
ixnay press would like to formally announce that Chris McCreary, co-editor since the press’s founding in 1998, will be stepping down to focus on his own writing projects — we give him major props for all he’s done for the past 16 years.
ixnay will continue, with Jenn McCreary serving as the press’s sole editrix moving forward — & is pleased as punch / tickled pink / chuffed to bits / over the moon to announce ixnay’s next two projects:
BIGGER ON THE INSIDE — a new, intergalactic chapbook by Philadelphia poets & Fact-Simile editors JenMarie Macdonald & Travis Macdonald, which bends the laws of space & time.
PHILALALIA is a regional three-day small press fair which will bring together poets, artists, publishers, & creative enthusiasts in a vibrant arts venue to share ideas, expertise, & performances, showcase their art, & offer their wares to the public.
The fair will feature small press poetry & art vendors showcasing & selling their work. There will also be art exhibits, poetry readings, performances, discussions, workshops, & related lectures throughout the day, as well as off-site events throughout the city.
The fair is FREE to attend & open to the public.
PHILALALIA 2014 will take place on Thursday, September 25, from 2-7pm, and Friday-Saturday, September 26 and 27th, from 11am-5pm. The fair will be held at Tyler School of Art, Temple University, 2001 N. 13th Street, Philadelphia, PA.
ixnay will be there — hope you will be, too —
Thursday, July 17th, 7pm:
Join us at Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop for a book release to celebrate Frank Sherlock’s latest collection, Space Between These Lines Not Dedicated (ixnay press, 2014). Frank will be joined by ixnay press editor/publisher, Jenn McCreary.
Frank Sherlock is the author of Space Between These Lines Not Dedicated, Over Here, The City Real & Imagined (w/ CAConrad), and a collaboration with Brett Evans entitled Ready-to-Eat Individual. Por Aquí, a Spanish-language collection of works translated by Carlos Soto-Román, will be published in Chile in fall 2014. Poems beyond the page have found their forms in installations/performances/exhibitions, including Refuse/Reuse: Language for the Common Landfill, Kensington Riots Project, Neighbor Ballads, and B.Franklin Basement Tapes. Sherlock is a recipient of the 2013 Pew Fellowship in the Arts for literature. He is currently Poet Laureate of Philadelphia.
Jenn McCreary is most recently the author of & now my feet are maps. Other works include The Dark Mouth of Living, :ab ovo:, a doctrine of signatures, & Odyssey & Oracle. worrywort, a collaboration with Pattie McCarthy, will be published by Little Red Leaves Textile Editions in 2014. She lives in Philadelphia where she co-edits ixnay press & was a recipient of the 2013 Pew Fellowship in the Arts for Literature.
In 1998, ixnay press published our first chapbook: 13, by our comrade-in-arms, Philadelphia poet Frank Sherlock.
We are ecstatic & electrified to announce that this spring, we will come full-circle & publish his full-length poetry collection, the truly exceptional Space Between These Lines Not Dedicated.
You can feel good about that.
Beginning in a thin line of short lines held broken by indentations, holding us something like together in this common indenture, wading through what we don’t want to be— “Ah this/sunrise/again on/a failed/paradigm”—waiting for some other thing, something more like together, Space Between These Lines Not Dedicated consecrates the little openings within which we prepare. This openness is given in our woundedness, where form arises, or spreads in periodic broadening, flipping the bird to the law it makes, because it can feel good in its own broken skin. I think I understand what Frank is saying: We are the form! We are the form of love! We wait for one another as the form of love! Frank Sherlock is a great poet and this is a great book. –Fred Moten
Frank Sherlock is the author of Over Here, The City Real & Imagined (w/ CAConrad), and a collaboration with Brett Evans entitled Ready-to-Eat Individual. Por Aquí, a Spanish-language collection of works translated by Carlos Soto-Román, will be published in Chile in fall 2014. Poems beyond the page have found their forms in installations/performances/exhibitions, including Refuse/Reuse: Language for the Common Landfill, Kensington Riots Project, Neighbor Ballads, and B.Franklin Basement Tapes. Sherlock is a recipient of the 2013 Pew Fellowship in the Arts for literature.