Around the Form


10/12/2017 anna’s 15th birthday
12/11/1998 dad’s 30(?)th birthday [no mass]
(revised upon another person’s relaying)

by  danny turek

              for exactly one person’s eyes

one wavy line~~~~~~~
14 pinpricks :::::::
you can see it sunk in my skin
pink and forgotten like throwing your head back
                                                                                     (in disbelief)

i made stress wrinkles before
i was old enough to care
about stress wrinkles
my age was in my choices
so lets be clear:

must’ve been 10-12
                        (dad says 3-4)
                       (age, such is the numberline)
the natural {be clear-the description when i just
looked it up now (10:48, 10/12 det): An unknown
comes out 
of seemingly nowhere to become a
player with almost divine talent. serendipity}

my sister my father (it was his birthday!!!!!!hooray age)
12/11/1998 he was as is always an old man
father has two loves: my mother/baseball
he is a doctor
my sister, a year younger
and i, jumping,
aiming for flight
oversized sitable firetruck to ottoman/loveseat/comfy chair/striped
rudolph the red-bodied to santa’s workshop (toys to deliver)
wheeled to sturdy, safe, end of game
from not what my father wanted me to jump on
to not what my father wanted me to jump on

it was a game during the
fake game onscreen
my father, enjoying his birthday,
paid me no mind
my sister, same,
might have been a sunday
patience for my mother
away (work?, shopping? needed loneliness?)
we all have reasons to
escape birthdays

from to from to
the natural then dinner w/ mom
then STOP

lets go down a diversion
     the natural: reconstructed from memory
              man with white hair
              stark like he was never supposed to have hair like that
                                                      (a curse? a weary cross?)
             is struck by lightning (causes hair?
                                                         lets not
                                                           fall far)
            can now bat with the best, leaves all pitchers like lonely children on mounds of earth, god granted the na(robert redford)tural ability to be the greatest. there is a hotel room, a game viewed from the dugout (spit, sunflower seeds) there is a woman of a sort involved with robert (the natural) redford, the royals/royalty (the team name). he doesn’t play like a regular player, he’s in out in out of the game.STOP

at some point my father’s voice
is a bullhorn at halftime
the rope round the steer’s neck
and i

little gap
my memory is a wash
the dry, the bleaching
my memory, the laundry
so either
at stop
i jumped
from ottoman/loveseat/comfy chair/striped
to the oversized stable firetruck
i was suspended btw the ottoman/loveseat/comfy chair/striped and the oversized sitable firetruck
landed on the oversized sitable firetruck

so either
way, i landed
     the middle of the left of my forehead
        cracked against
           the corner
             of the glass coffee table
i bled

my memory is like sunday night laundry
forgot to do it earlier
in the week, here we are
more like a dramatic reenactment
then a videotape
my memory, damp clothes

imagine my sister freaked out
blood spotted the living room
carpet (lets run down another road: was it our rented
house in cbus? the distant home of peoria? cleveland? conflation)
                                              (dad says peoria)
my father-doctor gets a dishtowel
blood is filling mouth
tastes iron-y, metal
thats after the fact
didnt have time to taste
but blood–flavored as it looks, deep red
                                    (all metals wish they
                                           were–thats rust)
it poured from the corner of my head
like cutting a hole in a bag of icing
all my human cells painted
the dirty, familiar ground
             (i worried, so much of me out of me)
time warps here
my memory

dad: nothing. nothing. everything is fine.
mom: nothing is fine.

she said i didnt cry
no cries
no yells thru the whole dealy-o
                          (not as far as i remember)
                                               (my memory)
who argues w/ mom?
no crying, blood, iron on the tongue
dishtowel, wet, bronze of streetlights
                           (always feels like rain’s falling)
my mom’s lap
the pinch of stitches reminds you
-fabric skin-
my contents were sealed away
and still (according to my mother)
no tears
when finished, popsicle
a toy of some sort,
doctors are friends to children
                                 (my experience)
we left
            (to a birthday dinner presumably, it felt like days
              like nights had passed. no sun but hours)

now my pink scar
a memory etched
outside my head

missouri, some weeks later
they (the stitches) needed out
i remember extreme anxiety
                     (hyperbole of time?big fish, bigger fish, bigger fish, etc.)
my childhood brain was wracked
but my father-doctor
                         (doctors can be fathers vs friends)
                                         (my experience)
thin, shiny surgery
i looked like frankenstein
broke free
black like lace
broken like lace
over under, untying your shoe

bit like it was erased
eventually, i can hardly
see it but there is the eroded
page, eraser mark, faded
scar, my head pink
that’s how i broke my
head and all this came out




by Alexander Gudding

“chocolate tums!”
her idea, to save the town
to bring us wealth
as my aunt slams her fist
into the chocolate wood

and eight other-women
and me

Madeline Island: The Cabin

No sports
No men
But me
A lite boy

For years I’d journey with my mother
And her sister
And my sister
To the most superior lake

The end of the dock
The heavy grey water
Used to wash
And freeze into heavier still

My cousins, all (female) as well
Tall and unrelenting
As they strode into the waves
Waves too tall

“do you want to be
a hairdresser?”

as I glide the comb through
their thick hair
and silk

did I?
no, but
the bonding was nice

to be so outnumbered
but feel better, or, more

this binary
having less and less ground
to cover
as it comes for me


there I learned my name\
and that my options\
were open\
rather than ordained\
or led by my crotch\
or face\
or sensitive nature\

[though even after a day with them
I’d still go out
And kill a frog or two]

Eventual nightmares on the lawn
The dark grey water
Waves against my chest
Pushing me to shore
As they pull farther and farther
My separation, clear
And the desire to join
This resistance of
In the arms
The slow-leg

Then – Fire
Rung around in our white plastic chairs
That creak and fart
Everyone laughs
And the warmth on my sweatshirt
The fervor of rest

Do I belong here?
They seem to think so
These apostles
At the center of their spirit

Their strength
And fear
In me
Be fore

The bending matriarch
Watching with contentment
At her efforts
The week will draw
To a close, abrupt

*Encour x4





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