Friday, May 8, 2015


Thou must of necessity live, unto something. The resident post-colonial critic said of adjunct labor, “we are not a charity.” One writer wishes he could afford to teach more. Works in a grocery, where the story is, “what is your story?” A physicist and a refugee carry pallets of milk at 4 a.m. toward health care at three months. Precarity sounds like teeth, like teeth falling out, like English teeth in the teeth of an election loss. We take our clichés back to their root, their rotten link to capital's jaw. Marx's beard, also, carried fecal matter. I found his grave among those of men and women who “fell asleep” in that century. The root is literalism, not liberalism, the teeth that were teeth before we yanked them with dental floss attached to javelin or a father's hand. Precarious hours, punched-in at the clock, tick tock cavities; when your tooth falls out, savor the hole in your gums. It allows your mouth flexibility, this absence of incisors. Cut your teeth on it. By the waters of Leman sit down and start knitting.

--8 May 2015


Janet said...

I looked up "precarity" wondering if it existed, or existed somewhere besides here, & I found it, with this addition, which I wish you'd use: "The social class defined by this condition has been termed the precariat." When I typed Precarity just now, it was turned into precocity twice by spellcheck.

Karen said...

Woooo! I am loving this series. Another great vault into a tightly packed world, another great ending. Sentence that begins "Precocity sounds like teeth..." might want some trimming, and I think you've needlessly convoluted "toward health care at three months" (I get what it means - two people working crummy jobs for health care that begins 3 months after starting, but the amount of work I have to do to unpack this feels unnecessary). It's another great poem. Can't wait to read the book. :)