POEM: ‘Rot<>Prayer’

Tags: Archives, Libraries, History, Labor, Decomposition, Liberation, Hope


The social reviewed, the docket revealed.

Unlock the morning; go back inside the mid-stretch

yawn. Our clay unconsumed, what could it be? Refuse

to say what is and isn’t gold

tone. Tune and laminate,

never change but gobble

up maleficence, prophecy—

dire needs make too many

sparrows. Take heed, take loaf.

heel and take care, traveler. Take

what’s yours or could be ours.

Shave the seasons to a crisp and leave

the corners of the fields. Eschew perfection.

Diagnose an ending. Consume and bloat and press.

As with any disruption, the finding aids the practice.

So practice. Falling apart is a trust fund for losers who care.

We can train the malware and loose the jubilee.

Take note of uncontrol. Historicize decay

until it eats the head whole. The weak will

highlight the passages of temporary work.

Labor on, mitochondria.

Apostles of apoptosis, our tendons are crackling.

If fascia says “look it up,” know, tender hand: take hold of the sky.

If took was the subject and I the victor,

grammar’s high praise for an orchestra of violence.

But God is more than cyclical. The lynx still prays.

Taken, everywhere, the Linux syncs the ships

with an algorithmic optimism.

To forgive requires remembrance.

To fossilize is to depend on stone and sand.

I love you demon ice. I love you, hot dirt.

We are not diamonds but we can be. Endless

does not mean desirable. This cycle is untoward,

becoming in a young dinosaur.

Depending on the hour, I may stay a little while.

May dance a little, dim down the lights and sleep at work.

We’re full of obsolescence; let’s go and pray, now.

Fissure now. Let’s go and care, now.

We have disappointment

to digest, hope to historicize

until the Unknowing chooses us back.

Faced again with disappointment, let’s not be an archive

of misanthropes. Let the units deceive. Lurch.

Still, categorically depressed. Here is the metadata. Find me

next door, waiting for a song to gather me up.

Come lunge with me. Whatever you need, we have it in the fridge.

There’s good rot in a beefsteak tomato. Let’s be rotten

till the core sprouts azaleas. Let sturdy be

botanically ingested, processed, studied

so that we may live in the world and be of the world:

gestational, achy, and rotten

full of prayer and fissure, and at the end of the day, enough.


“Faced again with disappointment, let’s not be an archive / of misanthropes.” This line is after

Britt Rusert’s “Disappointment in the Archives of Black Freedom.”

“live in the world and be of the world” from Mariame Kaba’s interview with Kim Wilson and

Brian Sonenstein: “Hope is a Discipline.”


“Worker slowdown til the end of capitalism.” Shared by Kendra who heard it from Hannah.

“Arts of Noticing,” The Mushroom at the End of the World, by Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing

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