Wednesday, November 23, 2011


JUBILAT Magazine has published PRETERNATURAL CONVERSATIONS and the seven resulting poems in issue #20. To celebrate, they have asked poets to make videos reading the poems.

Friday, November 11, 2011


--for Ariana Reines

On Halloween, 2011 it is estimated that the 7 billionth human child was born. 7 billion humans are here now. And we have displaced or made extinct SO MANY other species of creatures that we have ACTUALLY lost track! When poet Emily Dickinson was alive less than a billion humans existed on Earth. When she was alive wild bison roamed the open plains of the United States. Today there is just a small group of them in Yellowstone National Park, and those were put there to be wild on purpose because there were literally no wild bison left. They are museums of fur and hooves. We love our museums, they comfort and tranquilize us when we feel uncertain of the choices we have made. I have NEVER been MORE TERRIFIED than I am this Halloween!

Find a space in public to meet with other humans in silence. Create a flyer inviting anyone to come. Please do not invite your friends, it's IMPORTANT to let this time be for you to come together with total strangers. But let it be silent. Make several flyers and hang them in libraries, coffee shops, grocery stores, etc. My flyer read: THE SILENT MEETING GROUP -- WEDNESDAY – 10/26/11 – 5pm to 6pm – 2nd floor couch area of THE BOOK TRADER (2nd Street near Market Street) – ONLY RULE: NO TALKING. Show up a couple minutes late. I lurked around a bit, not wanting to appear too eager because I didn’t want anyone to know that I had created the flyer for the meeting.
To be perfectly honest this (Soma)tic is something I have NEEDED to do. How many people do I meet a day where I say to myself “IF I HAD TO LISTEN TO THIS PERSON EVERY DAY OF MY LIFE I WOULD KILL MYSELF!” Today’s answer: 7!!!!!!! (an exclamation point for every one of them) My threshold for small talk and stupidity is so low in this time of acute poverty and war that I could actually SCREAM when I face it! And in the past five years I have watched rich hipster yuppies take my neighborhood over. It belongs to them now and they know it, and they want me to know it. The amount of bullshit I have to witness at the grocery store is incredible at this point. INCREDIBLE! Watching the spoiled rich be malicious to stock clerks, “WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU RAN OUT OF IMPORTED OLIVES!?!” This brand of selfishness INFURIATES me! And there are now so many new condominiums in my neighborhood that those of us who rent apartments are the extreme minority. In fact the last public Laundromat in “our” neighborhood shut down and was turned into a ticket office for the ballet and opera. I’m doing my laundry in the bathtub because otherwise I would have to get on a bus and go many blocks across the city to even find a Laundromat to use. My soul is worn thin by human beings who don’t care about the infrastructure of community.

The Silent Meeting Group was – quite honestly – an incredible experience! I hovered around before joining the small group. There were six of us, and after being together in complete silence for awhile you begin to SMELL the others. Smell you, I SMELL something, maybe it's you, yeah, IT'S YOU! And it's okay. You smell just fine, but I smell you just the same. At one point a man in the group started to talk, but stopped himself, then wrote on a piece of paper for us to pass around, “Maybe we can all get a snack afterwards.” He seemed very sweet, however---

IMPORTANT: Do NOT go for a snack! You have poetry to attend to! For the entire hour of the meeting take NO NOTES! Meditate with these other humans, these fellow travelers in complete silence. If no one shows up the first time KEEP TRYING! People WILL show up! Enough humans will show up. You will all show up together. The only notes you take should be in your head. Make note of ALL THE SOUNDS around the group. Do not fear LOOKING at these people. The kinds of people who show up will understand, and will be looking at YOU as well! Look at how WEIRD our world can be! It’s beautiful and peculiar! What and how are we communicating without talking? Remember these things. Then as soon as the hour is up, casually walk away WITHOUT TALKING! NO TALKING! GO, GET GOING, GO SOMEWHERE where you can sit and quietly take account of your silent meeting. Take the quiet with you. I took a subway to a grocery store in my neighborhood. This is what I observed:

Outside the grocery store tonight a man and woman approached the entrance. He grabbed one of the large shopping carts. She said, "Why don't you get one of the smaller ones, we're only getting a few things." He said, "I'M A MAN I'M NOT PUSHING AROUND A SMALL CART!" She rolled her eyes and went inside. HOW FUNNY! I must admit that I had thought he was hot, but when he said THAT he was suddenly 10 times HOTTER! He reminds me of my old boyfriend Nate, a double Leo with a Scorpio moon and a fresh ax to grind every morning until he's had sex and coffee. HAHA!

Take your notes and shape them into a poem. The Silent Meeting Group might be something you want to continue in your life. I think I want it in my life!

Friday, November 4, 2011

2 (Soma)tics published online today!

Peter Moysaenko of
BOMB! Magazine for publishing
(Soma)tic "Aphrodisios" and its
resulting poem! You can see it
by clicking THIS LINK!!!!

publisher Adam Robinson
and special guest-editor
Benjamin Spivey of
publishing (Soma)tic "MINDING
THIRST" and the
resulting THIRST
poems! Click
HERE to read!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


a collaboration by CAConrad & Debrah Morkun

We went to Occupy Philadelphia on 10/31/11 where the tent city grows by the day for the world that is possible! The encampment is on the west side of city hall, facing the cavern of skyscrapers, forest of glass and villainy. This was late at night, between Samhain and Day of the Dead.

We were down near the subway entrance, and spent time meditating on two small gemstones we had given to one another earlier in the evening. CA’s was chrysocolla, and Debrah’s was red jasper. As soon as the meditation began a snare drum from the camp commenced, followed by another drum, then a bell, then a flute. We took notes for our poems.

We began the botanomancy by reading sprigs of rosemary and sage. One would hold and meditate on the bunch of herbs, then drop them to the ground for the other to read through their fallen patterns. These are the readings:

CAConrad: Two anarchists were making out by the strands of long wild grass, rocking back and forth to the beat of the snare drum. This is truly sacred space. Debrah threw the herbs, ALL the sage was together in the east. Two sprigs crossed over the pile, making a solid railroad tie. Tracks of the spirit world have brought her here to this day. Not just this day today, but to this day where she is the amazing poet she is. Her bio on the last page of her new book (The Ida Pingala – Blazevox Books) says she believes in near death experiences and prays to the old gods. Those are the tracks. Solidly. And they have brought her to the pile of rosemary, bunched together in the west. Rosemary being the foundational herb for magic spells, this packed bunch of rosemary to the west is a magnificent opening to the new, all the sprigs together in the same direction, a concentrated magical force PUSHING toward some unanticipated beginning.

Debrah Morkun: CAConrad threw the herbs, and the majority of the herbs fell into one pile that beamed with light. I held my hand over the pile, to sense the herbs’ vibrations. Botanomancy is a choice endeavor, for plants have a very communicative vibration. I kept hearing the words “planning” as the vibrations of the rosemary & the sage entered my hand. I heard this word “planning” like a cacophony of multiple herbal voices. Soon, Conrad will embark on a world tour for his amazing upcoming book A Beautiful Marsupial Afternoon, & he will spend quite some time doing necessary planning & prepping for this magical tour. I noticed two rosemary sprigs that had fallen outside of the larger pile – one to the Northeast of the pile, and the other to the Southeast. I touched the rosemary sprig to the northeast first, felt the vibrations of this foundational herb tell me that this beautiful tour itself will lead him into positive magic spirals & he will remember something that he forgot a long time ago. This memory will be so large & so good that he will wonder how he ever forgot this. Next, I touched the rosemary sprig to the southwest. This sprig indicated that before CAConrad leaves for the tour, he will experience a heightened spiritual transformation that will send his entire body & spirit into the highest spiritual vibrations. This spiritual transformation will manifest itself in the most proper ways to prepare him for his tour.

For a little while we took our notes, then we each built further botanomancy ritual-meditations for the poems. These are the rituals:

CAConrad: The drums had changed to a more sustained, deep, steady beat. It felt as if they were working with us, which is part of the magic of coming to Occupy Philadelphia, or going to Occupy Wall Street. The community is a complex mixture of feeling HOME, and feeling like entering a new family, a new kind of family structure. The vibrations were ripe this night especially. At this point I asked that we fix our eyes to a lighted window in a skyscraper beyond the trees above the subway entrance. It seemed as though no leaves were moving, but in fixing the gaze on a solid, unmoveable point, the slight, hidden motions and gestures of leaves would reveal themselves. Sometimes you can only see what moves by staring into what will not. This flickering parade is then revealed at last. To the snare it shines. After a long drink of this meditation we again took time to write our notes for the poems.

Debrah Morkun: Another set of snare drums. I was reminded of Shango & CAConrad’s divinations from our previous (Soma)tic collaboration. I rode the drums for awhile, & felt pulled to a sculpture in the center of the cavernous part of underground City Hall where CAConrad & I sat. Was this a sculpture of an angel or a paper airplane, folded properly & ready for flight? Either way, the sculpture bespeaks of flight, of leaving one moment to seek another, of hope & aspiration. I said, “Conrad, we must walk around this circle & gaze into the bizarre world below.” For this sculpture sits atop an ancient Masonic magic spell of lava rocks & yom kippur, of footballs & elephant ears. An underground glimpse of flora native to Philadelphia, weeds & trees & an interesting bush with red bark. We walked around this circle & gazed below, receiving wisdom transmissions showing us that there is another piece of magic spell in Philadelphia’s magic sluice – where lava rock, non-native to Philadelphia, & nonexistent for miles & miles & miles until you reach the Pacific Northwest or Hawaii, rests creating an eruption of energy that catches flight in the wings of the angel or the paper airplane above.

Drunk from this experience, we took more notes.