Seth Landman lives in Northampton, Massachusetts, watching basketball
and writing poetry. His work has been in Glitterpony and Order & Decorum
and is forthcoming in Good Foot.

New World

Fuck you and your clothing. You wear it like solid gold hangers. It looks fantastic. When I see people on TV, I hang up pictures of my favorite rock musicians. Some people are so big they create new dimensions in the passenger's seat. They take up extra movements in a symphony. They ball up hunger in sad moments and feed empty stomachs to the third world. When you wish for something, everything else knows you are full of hate. Then everything moans at you from the sky until you put out the flames with automatic water. There is a travesty during every hour. It looks like a television show I saw you watching. Your clothes mesh with the way you move just so. When I see your clothes I only think that this must be a new world. I will issue it a patent. I exercise plainly for the greater good. Somewhere it is raining. Clouds get trapped underneath me. What you said was a crushing blow. You even meant it. Some people will conceptually harm a series of your finest moments. I have refused to make any more phone calls. During the game I always realize I'd rather not be playing. Listen, it is really getting dark outside. Any moment I'm going to get hit in the face with the game ball. This is when the game ends. When everyone in the world is speaking a different language than you that's a moment of transcendence.

Towers of Shit

I'm thinking of building a few things.
First I'm going to build a helipad.
Then a ghost-track and a hospital
because I've got some running to do.
Congrats to an old flame, made the grade,
found Madagascar on a map, got called down
to the principal's office.
I love you to the singular spelling of her name,
years later, where in the world.
I'm wearing my fire for it smells of burning
hair in the garments.
Crows shoot up the sky.
Wait in the turnout in the parking lot
for picking me up for I won't be late.
But the next thing I build
will be the first thing.
But in shop I jig-sawed this little thing for you.
I've unsharpened, I won't know how to use that stone.
Let's rendezvous at the cul-de-sac?
A thousand lights that make up a day
in which we the kids are forced outside.
We the kids are not even trying
to live inside the statues of what we imagine is inside books.
No. We're in shambles;
I'm going to build a military barracks
and some people are going to start heading home.
I will highlight everyone I love here,
in this nook of the poem, if you know who you are,
if cap-gun smoke may have healed your bug-bites.
In a love song I couldn't have written
the neighborhood was an empty shoe, an obstacle.

West Texas Revelation

You're born, you're it. A list
begins with the first thing you say.

You have the disposition of a rattlesnake
cornered by a concrete wall and kids with sticks.

A vein-map with no scale.
That's no promise set out with the meal;

there's no truth in that dish pile, just your own
silhouette in the dark spread out in a field

braced for the electric seconds,
the brief pull of some satellite you know

wound up in space:
the size of a fist in your chest.

After After

A new scope for each animal.
I had ostrich legs; they filled me
with empathy though they made me violent.
For the first time, with a whale's vernacular, I told you how I felt.
I felt like a single cell, my former self.
The way you looked riding those thermals was perfect.
As horses, together, we dragged all mirrors away.
Later, I sat perched on a cliff for a while, wondering where you'd gone.
I would fly off the edge, I thought, and I just stepped.

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