This poem will use each word as the last word,
every word, as it were,
in its importance,
in all its honesty, in a circus of polyphony…
At daybreak, I walk to the beach, the littered sand,
just to compare the sand, the pitch, the swell
of land against the churn of waves, currents
that cut into the sand, the ledge
and then the fence, not as fractals of each
other, but as direct currents.
Toss in a snapped, lance-like flag pole,
pallets, all the old wood that always comes ashore,
real glass milk bottles, coke bottles, and all
the rotting tires, the styrofoam—how could
you find resemblances, except for the resemblance
one finds in being big?
And it is big! As big as Robert Duncan as
SPLENDOR, IT ALL COHERES.
Hurricane Eno has left behind what we
call ‘massive debris’ in the sanitation business.
As it tracks up the coast across Nova Scotia,
it will cease to cohere as itself somewhere
in the Maritimes; cold water always kills
hurricanes. Down at Stevo’s, though, the talk
is of Mrs. Karmody. Maybe—maybe—she
electrocuted herself last night. Her cat,
the old barn loft, direct current out there…
Cecil was listening to the police band all night.
No, I don’t know, I’ll talk to Chief Johnson,
he’ll know for sure. Mrs. Karmody had
Parkinson’s. She shouldn’t have been out there
alone, not after Kenny Karmody died, we all
know that. Easy for me to say, I guess…
Like the wind blows through a circus tent.
Cecil, this is where Adorno takes art.
This is how it corrects our understanding—
To understand artworks…means to become
aware of their logicality, and its opposite,
and of their fissures and of their significance.
Every art work, if it is to be
fully experienced requires thought
and therefore stands in need of philosophy,
which is nothing but thought that refuses
In splendor, all things come to rest.
May they rest ashore; may they rest
in the direct current, a fractal thereof.