Thomas Cook and Tyler Flynn Dorholt

from Decade Mode

The forms of advance are widening and it is lunch, the crux of any medium, at least for the time being, which is the middle of the day.

I stave off hunger by existing right here in the logs. Night brings other cruxes. Night cancels the past. Night brings the land to the reaching meadow and lies down in the flowers until meeting expectations.

Where is the stem? When it happens, and occasionally when it does not, I fill a salt dish with octopus meat and wait for all the mothers to peter out. This is how to create a little more ocean for those of us who cannot touch it freely within an hour, or at least I feel this feeling, and even to touch would not mean the salt is the right proportion.

They are so busy heaving, I don’t know what to make of them.

One of them over the sofa, the other in the traces of my old Honda. They are in cars and moving objects with feet. Without any sense of time, I watch them until the steam cooks my arm to the leather. A 90-second pouch of brown rice. I bought a set of cards made nearby by a family who has been making cards for hundreds of years, I think, or else another family owns the company now, or it is always a family that owns everything, really. I taught myself three solo games, gave up, and hope to introduce my closer friend to the long game that involves more thinking than most.

So many words are missing. They blip on catching up. Too long without a custard cup, I gripped my earlobe and listened for the train. I stripped my beer globe and glistened in the rain. I ran to the jacket and found a man panning my pockets for stamps. Please forgive my breath. I came up for air and made the conscious sentence my own.

Two of us, that’s all.

All the world is a bitten clover in the mouth of a good creature, fuel for the rudimentary belly. Dust of rings and static electricity continue to make the gas station an interesting place for self-reflection and nearer to oil than we can be at rest. I can think about closing my eyes on the topic of all the sweet fine crude while dreaming of what is stored in the thick hollow earth.

    *

No matter what, what is always the thing mattering, and this is not news nor is news not us. We print and fax, click and send, the mediums changing and not changing, the signatures blurring, each generation diminishing, on the whole, with respect to the last. Double negatives and agendas fixed by small outrages not originally in the speak. One could float the speaks in a dish of cold plums and numb your dangling ninny, of course, if it got to one.

May I give you more information regarding our performance-based pop culture generation?

First, I complete the majority of my incongruences and emotional derailments by recommending you listen to the mix I made, a culmination of many songs introduced to me by a man on the radio, none of which I’ve listened very hard to, but all of which are supposed to be both generational and risky and returning to some fumbled nostalgia of mine that I dare not repeat if I want to be accepted to friendship groups founded on art school politics.

I use tempera paint.

Secondly, a phone call might suffice but I can tell you now that we will be sending you updates and comments on a daily basis regarding how you look between genres and what fashion grows around but never within you. I keep leaving feelings in the clime, asking for an ice, and all the while my teeth are in need of a scrub. I remember when you chose khakis and a pink shirt. I remember passionfruit.

Now, what about the contemporary city sounds you drive around when you try and publish a sonnet? They are crispy noodles.

We steam because it forces the other minutes to recall how when we don’t we are just simple flotillas. These were just shelters on the long path. Now they are stopping points for the historical conundrum which blooms from the restless orchard ahead.

 *

I am made to mention myself by avoiding what I have become, like a light shadow on a dark shadow on the screen of a tube television stacked on a ping pong table. I cannot have blinking in the top bar.

One shouldn’t just come into the living arrangement and barrage someone that lives there with precise forehand, not in the first instance or moment of passing through, anyway.

They’re going to pay you: that is the newsflash. I am trying to make sense of the things that have happened, is really the whole reason I am saying anything at this point. I keep breaking perfectly with commas into slight unknowns. In other words, I am trying to point to instances where I learned of circumference and understood abundance in the context of where I was sitting and standing and what I was wearing, but also in the context of what other people were doing, and then more generally in the context of everything that was happening.

Trampolines and pinball and stickball and intravenous mileage. I am not a sentimentalist, however, even if I do want to repeat 1993. The days pass like rats in a maze. The walls are scraping the months back. The passing feels like I am part of a great leg lurching forward from days from which I will say a great word and then topple over, contained by the way people have understood the things that I have said.

What were those, anyway? I could be in some ways solipsistic like everyone else. At night I think about how in sleeping I am not in control.

Most psychological disorders were discovered to explain everyone in the world as inert, bleak, troubled by the larger intentions. Most of the things that I can determine have gone something like that. I’m at a laptop on a table now. It’s the afternoon. In time, it will be less important to know the year.

 *

How long will the voices which run on a fake line of care go on without being discovered?

They will celebrate the twentieth anniversary of a movie, the augmentation of style into substance, skateboards and pop chords. I hear them everywhere and I follow their echoes to a place where seriously distraught grumbles fold over into admonishment for any and everything. These people do not want you to receive full and intimately packaged days of importance. The concept of others is growing in the handhold, the manifold, the tablecloth.

I’m looking at the things stacked around me with greater concern, is the thing.

This brings me to biographies and then to straight facts. A biography is a list of items across days, mostly, but one that is given the shape of wind.

That is the space that we share, at least at certain points that we send between. You can make of any disappearance an intrusion or vast appearance of spirits. I will add a few words.

 *

Yet in other ways the single day is not over. Until I came here it was. I’m always returning to the site of myself like the man in the box. Four years like a clawing infant.

Whisked through the park, pulled from the back of the bike, the tethered rollerblader is the sign of a time, shirt reaching down to knees and everything rumpled. Everything stumped. Diving into the spirit that inspired the memory is skipping a stone across the part of it that still defines you. We tried to skip the long thin one and it went over the water without ever dipping.

Knowing that today is difficult, but that’s why we are always trying to find a place in which we are comfortable, in which we can watch the old movie in the new way, I reflect.

The favored scene of snowballs or impostors.

The mind takes up quite a bit of space, which is why I am a terrible empiricist and a wonderful scientist. I can believe in more from gaps than from old facts. The word is the relief of itself, and putting them over on themselves is the deep fidget.

The other day, someone spoke to me about the good and the great of words and the mind and I opened my pockets. The tree outside is catching early flickers of sun. I was emailed about emailing someone, asked, over a connection, whether a connection could be made. I lost my own connections in this transfer.

This is the world in which I live, a world of olive toes and bath salts. When I wake up, I take fifty slowed breaths into meditation, but after three I am not counting at all. After three, I have become myself in the moment I am aware that I will never remember but for the way that it is repeated across a series of unknown days.

Thomas Cook and Tyler Flynn Dorholt live in Los Angeles, CA and Syracuse, NY. Their chapbook, Monster: A Glottochronology, was published by Alice Blue, and other collaborative writings have appeared in Spinning Jenny, Horse Less Review, and elsewhere. With JoAnna Novak, they edit Tammy. ​
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About Posit Editor

Susan Lewis (susanlewis.net) is the editor of Posit (positjournal.com) and the author of nine books and chapbooks, including Heisenberg's Salon, This Visit, and State of the Union. Her tenth book, Zoom, was awarded the Washington Prize and will be published in 2018. Her poetry has appeared in such places as The Awl, Berkeley Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Cimarron, Gargoyle, The Journal, The New Orleans Review, Prelude, Raritan, Seneca Review, So to Speak, Verse, and Verse Daily.