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Saturday, 14 July 2012



Man on the slag heap in Łaziska Górne (Ober Lazisk), Upper Silesia: photo by Marcin Slava, January 2011

The magical cloth of life will not grow
..............................of its own volition
It must be made

or did he say 'glow' or 'regrow'
'in your condition'

The lobby reader held a book
on web design -- Dreamweaver

The mesh in the fabric too tight

File:Rubidium 85 Magneto optical trap cloud 2.png

A near infra red image of a cloud trapped and cooled in a magneto optical trap.
A MOT cloud in two different density regimes: if the density of the MOT is high enough, the MOT cloud goes from having a Gaussian density distribution (left), to something more exotic (right). In the right hand image, the density is so high that atoms have been blown out of the central trapping region by radiation pressure, to then form a toroidal racetrack mode around it. Both a normally loaded MOT and a heavily loaded MOT with racetrack modes are shown: photo by Rickky679, 9 September 2009




"Man on the slag heap"

"mesh in the fabric"

"cloud in two different density regimes:"


light coming into fog against invisible
ridge, birds beginning to call in field
in foreground, wave sounding in channel

view of position, continued
to arrange the shapes

pattern in painting, shadow
in room, light in bed

grey white of fog reflected in channel,
sunlit white of tern circling above it

Susan Kay Anderson said...

There is something
in the way
going around
the racetrack
of life.
It is a cloud.
The poet calls it
a web
that is carefully
spun out
woven in spacetime

on dreams
back lit by the sun
not the screen.
Someone walks there.

Wooden Boy said...

That tight mesh that lets nothing breathe; such suffocation quietly expressed. All bandaged up for our own good, given our "condition".

I love that this begins with a possible mishearing (and we all know that there's little that's accidental in that).

Susan Kay Anderson said...

S=A=N=D=W=I=C=H Isles

I remember that cloud,
it passed by before. It wasn’t heavy either. Just
like now. I remember that cloud. It was
so whispery. It whispered to me.
I remember that cloud. It cast
a clear shadow. One that quickly
shy. I remember
cloud. It
told me
my future. I couldn’t hear
all its grammar—

but there was no rain that night,
even though it had seemed like it

fluffy but was it? Was that fluff, especially?
Was it a fluffiness that became something, even? I remember
that cloud. It showed
something to me, dipping and turning.
I remember that cloud.
I remember it changing.

That’s what I remember best about it. That’s
what it was. Probably all that air
hot and cold
earth turning.

vazambam (Vassilis Zambaras) said...

I may be wrong but in reading this I get a picture of the poet being physically examined and then of him examining in turn—through the medium of poetic language—the conditions that have brought him here, i.e a doctor’s surgery but also the world at large. A very incisive poem.

TC said...

I too may be wrong but I get exactly that same impression. Properly stitched-up and improperly stitched-up at the same time. And the deepest cut came when... but no, the cuts can always come deeper. Just ask Captain Cook for example. Now if he had been paying a bit better attention to what was going on up the beach, and not so much to having to type in all those caps and equal signs in S=A=N=D=W=I=C=H, they might not have had time to stick an incisive fork in him.

ACravan said...

This is one of the most perfectly distilled and realized, emotionally affecting pieces I have ever read or viewed. It's been haunting me. Curtis

Susan Kay Anderson said...

Cook languished
in the Lang
searching for
the perfect beach
to anchor Endeavor
and Adventure
taking Advantage
of the Situation

Susan Kay Anderson said...

Leaving the equal signs
back on the shore
allowed the voyagers
to go beyond
the war
that happened

TC said...


Well, it's haunting for me too. The not being able to heal, to get new skin. The hiroshima burn ointment isn't making much impact. Pieces of the car are still imbedded, though it may be those are pieces of the street. The Street Where I Live. Site of all those fatalities over all those years and yet whoosh, whoosh the traffic stream goes on unimpeded. Though at three in the morning a large mother deer and two young ones dared venture across last night, to get at somebody's rose bushes, anything for a drop of wetness in this season. They are at risk but obviously more nimble in the fatal moment of decision (machine vs. body) than was I. In short the matter has entered the cloud chamber of human insolubilia. Radiation pressure is above normal. Blunt force trauma has blown some atoms out of the central region of the temporal lobe and there is the imminent threat of a sudden Gaussian density distribution (in a manner of speaking). Certain words for certain things can no longer be summoned from the filing system (though the things are still there). Thoughts are in racetrack mode around a toroidal track and I keep remembering a trip to Santa Anita, and being driven to Tijuana by an uncle to watch a Jai-Alai match, and seeing my first real-life supermarket, in Santa Monica, off Pico, on a foggy morning just like this one, 62 years ago.

The lobby reader actually WAS reading that book, and the piped in Seventies Lite Pop and the kiddy furniture seemed perfect accompaniments. The man is a skilled professional book designer who has had to give up designing books because no one wants books any more. Just apps. Whatever those are. He did not seem happy about this, but explained that Ya gotta make a living. And the avenue to the future is paved with litte brittle bits of HTML code.


In response to your generous interest the matters of Captain Cook, Lunch and the S=A=N=D=W=I=C=H Isles (your winter home, can one call it that?) have been taken up at the docket in the post a posteriori. Let Resolution and Independence weigh anchor and Endeavour to deal with the damned rocks aft and bloody sandbar starboard, posthaste, then.

ACravan said...

Well, human insolubilia being what it is, you've painted a perfect, what goes on under the surface, picture of it in very few words and pictures, which is a fine thing to do, I think. I'm sure the lobby room/reader details were just like that. The doctors we see now are all at a suburban branch of the University of Pennsylvania Hospital and I always wonder what they had in mind when they designed the spaces and whether anyone gave any thought to how surreal it would always be there. I guess, if you're lucky, the relief felt at being able to leave under your own power makes up for the stress of being there. We saw one of our few remaining Tuxedo deer this morning. I suspect that the survivors feel tremendous anger and resentment at what was done to their once large, proud and beautiful population. Everything's quite pretty here -- it always is in the summer -- but the place is bereft of the life it used to display so abundantly. We're headed to Maine tomorrow for a couple of days. I really would like to see a moose. We're going to seek out whales. I hope you're not feeling too low. It's all one can do to maintain steady, acceptable spirits these days. Curtis

TC said...


That helps. May Maine be as good for all of you as it always promises to be.

Susan Kay Anderson said...

I am back in the Sandwich Isles now as I write. A pond is in the distance and I didn't bring anything for lunch. It is my home away from home (Nonpareil).

TC said...

This is doubly sad yet not. A Nonpareil being held captive in a Sandwich. But a vegetarian sandwich, with palms. Victory, Excellence, professional Detective Opportunities. When in moments of quandary, just think about Nome, or bears having a berry lunch upon the Umpqua. Before their long season of Nescience. One envies them that. A twinge of guilt in hearing you are going hungry in that we have deprived both you and the bears of those last few currants and berries. Yet they have been fortifying, a sweet joining agent, and the thought that went with them also, these things have helped keep the frayed web from falling apart altogether this summer, Susan.

Susan Kay Anderson said...


This humble feeling
standing at the sliding glass door
looking at the big barn
all aluminum siding. Airplane hangar.
The rotting fence posts.
The wood pile covered with plastic.
The horizon where the train used to go.
The hills beyond. BLM and Weyerhaeuser clear cuts
all the way to Roseburg. Wood smoke from homes.
One of the stray cats crossing the yard. She picks the path.
To go stand beside the wood pile. Ears ready like wings.
Listening to all the little creatures stirring under there.

Susan Kay Anderson said...

Travelling Trees

She sat by the picture window, watching the traffic go by, sitting on the bigger pillows of the couch, the log trucks making their way out from Mt. Scott and to Roseburg, the Timber Capitol of the World. The trees still looking as if they were alive, there, piled up onto the long beds, chained down, dripping with bark, ferns, spade footed toads, burls, leaving the drifts of ash behind, the snowdrifts of Mt. Mazama ash from thousands of years ago.

Susan Kay Anderson said...

Dog Nurse

I can cover her up. With my red sweater.
Pendelton. She slumbers, takes a bit of space on the rug,
wrapped up, smaller than she looked before. Shrunken.
I did not worry about her until I heard what happened.
She snores there, she is snoring along, snoring along,
and then quiet. I watch to see if she’s breathing,
my black and white baby, my hound actually—
Boston lab mix. Some Rott. She feels hot to the touch.

Smooth stone animals in the Umpqua
the bunch grass bunched and twisted
in the sun. The world is bedrock, water,
and trees. It is mint, milk chocolate, bluebird
and peacock. It is black oak. It is robin’s egg
and Canada goose. It is all this. None of this.

The world demonstrated here. It is call and response,
give and take. The world lumpy, stagnant.
I’d forgotten another sort of time, the date, the willows.
Their tendons holding everything together. Strawberry.

aditya said...

Wow.. at the end of every two lines one thinks okay its going this way but then it turns and turns back in. great poem..