Poetry

Two Poems by Daniel Owen

Our poetry editor, Wendy Xu, has selected two poems by Daniel Owen for her monthly series that brings original poetry to the screens of Hyperallergic readers.

Vincent van Gogh, “Still Life with Cabbage and Clogs” (1881) (via PW McMahon on Flickr)

 

SLEEVE AS PACKING

 

creating use
from the word loving
or of it
of that action of a window
again and again
as if to learn
what could be laze
would be worth noting
notating or taken
to a garden full of radiant cabbage
anxious for employment
windows of working

 

the garden weeps
in the air
as sleeping is fine
sometimes
on a wrack of opening
points
the monologue walks
to the center of the room
we are listening drinking in circles
we like babies
babies with books in their teeth
they walk clapping
for apparent newness
in drift

 

reason washes on the substitute sublime
its taste of hair and salt for a calendar
is in its action
hours that will come
promising a hem a hem
a root a root

 

 

 

MORE TIME

 

institutions of your own
appetite described by sleep as
the back of the book
steps away the fears come nearer
the flesh — an image of
tiny bodies in palms and
footage of gone-by arboreal dream homes
fetishized oceans with you sipping need
to be in my mouth an exhibition —
cold sun work walk
tires along canal banks erase
the mind amid music
in the morning after what’s passed
for today where the record
shop used to be the picture
of pills—the zorse’s father fenced
looking out at sky and
ground — the beautiful horses he seeks
impossible release in a radio voice
and the papered over not knowing
makes the kissing noise to minutes in attempt
to save something — how I should act around
work or grandmas our suffering
shorn from what its shearing is
saved on to repeat an hour
as an opening shared —
history is not the like time tells
to passage as airs can’t hear
the words none will unwrite
to listen to the sea in the clock of the face
to talk but not produce
a state that isn’t process so
we order light on cheekbones discharged
again and are for the night wheels
along the empty decided

 

*   *   *

Daniel Owen is the author of Toot Sweet (United Artists Books, 2015) and Restaurant Samsara (Furniture Press Books, 2018). His translation of Afrizal Malna’s Document Shredding Machine is forthcoming from Reading Sideways Press. His writing has recently appeared in The Recluse, The Brooklyn Rail, The Fanzine, Vestiges, and elsewhere. He is a member of the Ugly Duckling Presse editorial collective.

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