FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Sonnets by John Lowther

by

Sonnets
by John Lowther

Stubborn, persevering, impenetrable as stone, yet possessing the malleability that renders us unbreakable.
Men are so necessarily mad that it would be another twist of madness not to be mad.
More gruesome film clips, and more puzzled intellectuals declaring their mystification over the systematic murder of millions.
I want us to gaze each other until we desubjectivate violently.
To long for the good and feel its absence, picking apart, historicizing, drowning in the weight of phenomena, and tripping on content.

*

Wherever the war on drugs touches down, death and destruction result.
Over-priced and shitty tasting seems to be a popular product niche around here.
Just watched a guy get through airport security with a full bottle of Captain Morgan.
Remember, it’s always the cameraman who grows old, never the star.
As the fetus emerged as a person, the pregnant woman began literally to disappear from view.
My husband, as police chief, makes sure that his department has a good supply of clean teddy bears in stock at all times.
We need to debate killer robot ethics before they become mass market.

*

That that exists exists in that that that that exists exists in.
I took a walk in the cemetery to help me realize that.
Did not hear the report, only the bullet slowing down and tumbling.

Laws are inherited like diseases.
A good consumer is an insecure consumer.
Prisons aren’t safe for anybody.
Bye-bye, mutually supportive coalition politics; hello, civil war.
Take me to your slums.

As soon as it’s allowed all oil companies will flock.
If I say neoliberalism he acts like I said extraterrestrials.
Old and young, we are being worked over every day.

*

Be a dignified victim.
Never safe, never equal.
There are no counterexamples.
I learned in very immediate ways that fear is only one of many palpably violent consequences of a vast sea of heterosexual prescriptions.
Absolutely agree with previous.
And addictive, metaphysical hurt.
Natural or man made.
The meaning of litura (deletion) can still be found in the obsolete English verb of “to liturate,” i.e., to blot out, to erase.
Murder calls for murder.
Maybe I mean action.
What I claim is to live to the full the contradictions of my time, which may well make sarcasm the condition of truth.

*

With the disappearing of the soul the lived body is exiled.
Stepping on a scale can be a humiliating experience, but with the Weight Talker II, it’s a humiliating experience narrated by a disappointed robot.
The body is to be compared, not to a physical object, but rather to a work of art.
And the weird thing is your body wants to die.
The languages of death are always gagging and occluding the languages of the body.
But your booty don’t need explaining.

Note on the Text

555 is a collection of sonnets whose construction is database-driven and relies on text analytic software. I crunched and analyzed Shakespeare’s sonnets to arrive at averages for word, syllable and letter which became measures for three groups of sonnets. All lines are found material, thus typographical oddities abound. Values for word, syllable and letter were calculated for each. Line selection isn’t rule-driven and though I have tried to be expansive, it inevitably reflects what I read, watch, listen to, and thus my slurs and my passions, what amuses or disturbs. Sonnets are assembled using nonce patterns or number schemes; by ear, notion, or loose association; by tense, lexis, tone or alliteration.

John Lowther’s work appears in The Lattice Inside: An Atlanta Poets Group Anthology (UNO Press, 2012) and in Another South: Experimental Writing in the South (U of Alabama, 2003). Held to the Letter, co-authored with Dana Lisa Young, is forthcoming from Lavender Ink. Other sonnets from 555 have appeared or are forthcoming in altpoetics, Cartagena, Futures Trading, The Gambler, Moss Trill, Otoliths, Unlikely Stories and Uut. He’s writing a dissertation to re-imagine psychoanalysis had intersex and transgender lives been taken as foundational for understanding subjective possibility.

Editorial Note: (Please Read Closely Before Submitting)

Poets Basement is now on Facebook. Find us as http://www.facebook.com/poets.basement.

To submit to Poets Basement, send an e-mail to CounterPunch’s poetry editor, Marc Beaudin at counterpunchpoetry@gmail.com with your name, the titles being submitted, and your website url or e-mail address (if you’d like this to appear with your work).  Also indicate whether or not your poems have been previously published and where.  For translations, include poem in original language and documentation of granted reprint/translation rights.  Attach up to 5 poems and a short bio, written in 3rd person, as a single Word Document. Expect a response within two months (occasionally longer during periods of heavy submissions). Submissions not following the guidelines may or may not receive a response.

Poems accepted for online publication will be considered for possible inclusion of an upcoming print anthology.

For more details, tips and suggestions, visit http://crowvoice.com/poets-basement. Thanks!

Editorial Note: (Please Read Closely Before Submitting) Poets Basement is now on Facebook. Find us ashttp://www.facebook.com/poets.basement. To submit to Poets Basement, send an e-mail to CounterPunch’s poetry editor, Marc Beaudin at counterpunchpoetry@gmail.com with your name, the titles being submitted, and your website url or e-mail address (if you’d like this to appear with your work). Also indicate whether or not your poems have been previously published and where. For translations, include poem in original language and documentation of granted reprint/translation rights. Attach up to 5 poems and a short bio, written in 3rd person, as a single Word Document. Expect a response within two months (occasionally longer during periods of heavy submissions). Submissions not following the guidelines may or may not receive a response. Poems accepted for online publication will be considered for possible inclusion of an upcoming print anthology. For more details, tips and links to past installments, visit http://crowvoice.com/poets-basement. Thanks!

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

Weekend Edition
August 26, 2016
Friday - Sunday
Andrew Levine
How Donald Trump Can Still be a Hero: Force the Guardians to the Duopoly to Open Up the Debates
Louisa Willcox
The Unbearable Killing of Yellowstone’s Grizzlies: 2015 Shatters Records for Bear Deaths
Charles Pierson
Wedding Crashers Who Kill
Richard Moser
What is the Inside/Outside Strategy?
Patrick Cockburn
Turkey’s Foray into Syria: a Gamble in a Very Dangerous Game
Brian Terrell
What Makes a Hate Group?
Dirk Bezemer – Michael Hudson
Finance is Not the Economy
Howard Lisnoff
Trouble in Political Paradise
Ben Debney
The Swimsuit that Overthrew the State
Ashley Smith
Anti-imperialism and the Syrian Revolution
Vincent Navarro
Is the Nation State and Its Welfare State Dead? a Critique of Varoufakis
John Wight
Syria’s Kurds and the Wages of Treachery
Lawrence Davidson
The New Anti-Semitism: the Case of Joy Karega
Mateo Pimentel
The Affordable Care Act: A Litmus Test for American Capitalism?
Roger Annis
In Northern Syria, Turkey Opens New Front in its War Against the Kurds
David Swanson
ABC Shifts Blame from US Wars to Doctors Without Borders
Norman Pollack
American Exceptionalism: A Pernicious Doctrine
Ralph Nader
Readers Think, Thinkers Read
Julia Morris
The Mythologies of the Nauruan Refugee Nation
Ann Garrison
Unworthy Victims: Houthis and Hutus
Julian Vigo
Britain’s Slavery Legacy
Rivera Sun
Accountability: An Abandoned American Value
Philip Doe
Colorado: 300 Days of Sunshine Annually, Yet There’s No Sunny Side of the Street
Joseph White
Homage to EP Thompson
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
DNC Playing Dirty Tricks on WikiLeaks
Ron Jacobs
Education for Liberation
Jim Smith
Socialism Revived: In Spite of Bernie, Donald and Hillary
Robert Koehler
The Heart of Order
David Macaray
Organized Labor’s Inferiority Complex
David Cortright
Alternatives to Military Intervention in Syria
Binoy Kampmark
The Terrors of Free Speech: Australia’s Racial Discrimination Act
Cesar Chelala
Guantánamo’s Quagmire
Andrew Stewart
Did Gore Throw the 2000 Election?
William Hughes
From Sam Spade to the Red Scare: Dashiell Hammett’s War Against Rightwing Creeps
Raouf Halaby
Dear Barack Obama, Please Keep it at 3 for 3
Charles R. Larson
Review: Paulina Chiziane’s “The First Wife: a Tale of Polygamy”
August 25, 2016
Mike Whitney
The Broken Chessboard: Brzezinski Gives Up on Empire
Paul Cox – Stan Cox
The Louisiana Catastrophe Proves the Need for Universal, Single-Payer Disaster Insurance
John W. Whitehead
Another Brick in the Wall: Children of the American Police State
Lewis Evans
Genocide in Plain Sight: Shooting Bushmen From Helicopters in Botswana
Daniel Kovalik
Colombia: Peace in the Shadow of the Death Squads
Sam Husseini
How the Washington Post Sells the Politics of Fear
Ramzy Baroud
Punishing the Messenger: Israel’s War on NGOs Takes a Worrying Turn
Norman Pollack
Troglodyte Vs. Goebbelean Fascism: The 2016 Presidential Race
Simon Wood
Where are the Child Victims of the West?
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail