My new friend Rinku just told me today in an e-mail, "You are only the 2nd American I have met since my arrival here in May 2007 who has expressed anger and sorrow at the massacre of the Iraqis in an illegitimate war." How is that possible? Really? But I know it is possible, easily possible. Iraq War veteran Agustin Aguayo spoke in Philadelphia last year at the Quaker Meeting Center about the large number of Iraq War veterans who come home to the US after their tour of duty, only to move to Germany soon after, marry German women, and denounce their US citizenship out of anger at the LEVEL of denial in our country for Iraq. If that information does not fully enter the American Soul, what will? With this war it is our soldiers who are becoming expatriates, not just the hippie poets. Raise your children with that bit of American history, as I'm sure their school books will forget to mention it.
Without a doubt THE BIG MELT afflicted all my senses in 2007 as only the best poetry will do. Written by President of the United Hearts, this book is relentlessly directed at all we wish to deny. READ THIS:
Gentlemen, I think it will get darker
Before it gets lighter, is my nose bleeding?
Undeniably dead but attractive
We'll get it right this time, won't we?
Do we have to go in? [Expletive]
Forests stink of the failure -- what country
(Is it his?) Guarantees complete
Excretions that moisten that
Potential or incomprehensibility
Nature produces comparable to
An invasion that cannot be
Its scheduled no-show disregard.
It's impossible to be an artist
The point of deception
Complete control, pretending control
An attentive eye, the open ear
allegory heavier than rock
Lynndie England and her leash
Go blindly to disaster
Clamped to his genitals
The giant ice shelf splits asunder
"People scare better when they're dying"
This society's crazed
Covered with straps they could not
Stand being free
In the vernacular of the peasantry
Society's unmitigated hate
Looks like a "whopper"
Isolates matrixes gummy 'eligibility'
Inadequately equipped environs
[A persistence of catastrophe]
Build up and never evaporate
Undeniably and reliably
The human body will be an event
This is your cake, and this is your crown
You can go anywhere
The final resting place
The painted ink in the editorial:
We killed each other
In bursts of mud
This is not only excellent writing, it's a poetry with a massive embrace on the problems in front of us, around us, deeply within us. It's not seeing a chain of events but a web of, an undeniably accurate web of, connecting every single action to its resulting deprivation, as accurate as any smart bomb, hopefully even smarter.
The FORWARD of the book is, beautiful to say, at the end of the book! Here is a bit of that FORWARD to get you understanding something about THE BIG MELT as well as President of the United Hearts:
The Big Melt is a collective's assembled response in verse to the 2004 U.S. Presidential election and its aftermath, i.e. the continuing elision and transfer of legislative power to the executive branch (that vast monument of fatuity leaning toward the future like the Tower of Pisa, in which nothing less than the happiness of humankind is being worked out) in every public sector, government, finance, educational, and cultural. That said, it has been mentioned with a measure of confidentiality that I intend to honor that President of the United Hearts (hereafter, PUH, pronounced pooh; a pleasant enough alternative to PUS) is a collective absent the flesh and blood members needed to sustain collaborative endeavors of whatever kind. Be that as it may, PUH's message, urgent and indispensable, is one of gravitas and moral outrage -- it is against the radical right and the misguided timidity of progressives. Further, the work generated within its membership comes from its source, the heartland, the opening zero, the Midwest -- the void it is roomy to lie in. In action against the philosophy of myself, I, the correspondences between PUH's eyes, mouths and ears, however arrayed, pushes what is ours upon ourselves, cultivates its promise in our hearts -- no measuring its innermost play. As voiced by Medea, "but I was rendered speechless / and from there nothing but pain." PUH is capable of taking the abyss of its own communicability upon itself and of exposing it without fear or complacency. Its promise is a bold move to which the reader no longer viewing life from behind the screen of her ego but able to see things in the human world's return (nostos) to splendor willingly succumbs.
If I could afford a thousand copies of one book from 2007 to hand out freely, it would be THE BIG MELT. And 2007 was a year of many terrific books! Factory School published THE BIG MELT, and you can order it HERE or HERE.