Edwin Torres

the generosity of a powerful gesture

it is the words’ finding of time
and settling
on you  

and moon what morning does
clemescent run
across a smear

fact elevates intention no matter
your tossed pillow
the mark you want disappeared

is the one I know you by
the ash finds a way from hand to skin

does it implicate
to think this way

to trouble a boy
out of a day
to air out an open skull

why not talk to myself and see what I get out of it

                          has your listening turned
            have you collaged the page with your own
                          on the poem’s line
            your line
                          where is it

            relistening into turning — is a sprung turn
            / a talking aligned with a getting — a letting in of the temporal /

So as, to blah blah blah the inkblot
            / point a to point b, is that, my z / goes / to z
So as, to mirror mirror mirror / the kid
            — bringing you / the talk
This talk, juxta-proposed, to escape time
            — the new kind of wordnew — why not talk to myself

            ° ° °

Streamingly seemed of consciousness
            collaged of wordnew — for all you go-betweeners
So as to geode page — into — dystopia

            For the grander we / all set for today's climb /
            — stanza to stanza — to see what we get out of it

            ° ° °

Traversing cliff to cliff
looking for the pungent traveler — word to word

Which ledge of / the verbal / will bring what we need today
acknowledging that / need / is as uncertain as / day /
                                                                      my next bringer
                                                                      bringing time a timepiece / behind
            — which is / in front / why not
                                                                     talk to myself / why not see

            Enmity of my brightest inclusion 

            ° ° °

Is there memory in the make of the sentence that looks to eradicate time
fertilizing doubt into day             time is mulch
                                                        planting interference
                                                        — to find influence

            Interference is my influence
                        — of-take
                        — in-take
                        — gumma-take
            Inconsistencies that bend arrival / blend arrivé
                        — to inner free
                        — the playopen / the free’d plum
            Matter mulch
                        — to render non-spatial turns as time      — why not
                                                                                talk to myself
                                                                                              — why not 
                                                                                get out of it

            ° ° °

Do you wanna connect or make me work?

            ° ° °

Context is a limbed aperture for a poem
              — I am constantly inside the reach I can’t get at
              — to see what I get out of it         

The longest drawl I can forge out of my page
              — my escapade
              — the longest scrawl I can make

Out of my stop, with you
              — is dependent on my own climbing abilities
              — sunk? / or / liberated?

What weaponry am I given for the crawl
              — that I choose to climb / is my weapon
              my glorious uncertainty of day / as suspect as my drive

To be gloriously uncertain — of point z to z
              — can we fold out this map
              — only in your charge — what I get out of seeing you

            ° ° °

Reminding we
              what we need / what we offer
Again we give to reader
              what we bring / only what we charge
              — there is / we — as — you / all over the place —

Can we curtail the inexperienced genome
That kid-bringing mirror
             — watch out mirror...kid!

Formations of pliant oppositions
             — to unravel uneasy
             — so as to form, what pleases — the uneasy ear

The inexperienced genome of a kid
Bringing you a mirror
            — is to speak, between / what is, and not / formed
            — why not, render perspective its jaunt
            — why not, formalize a wayward hue
            to annoy convention — why not

            So as, to dimple a cluster out of cognition

            ° ° °

           What grazes a meal from the landing spots
                                        we harbor, here on soiled hocus
            And here acsentent ensem-ble
                                       taking reading patterns
            From page-bound pheromones
                                        stopping, and here, to stop
            — ply my code / for we — as — you /
                                        what claims ear, for hand

            And take, for doing

            ° ° °

The explaining object over the claiming one, is to find
where doing happens 
             — to talk to myself
             — to see what I get out of it / so as / to eradicate time

                           — every moment I spend with myself
                                                     I lose time, only to pick it up again —

To instant leave
For new to challenge / what is old, to an ear / unformed

            To be one
            — at feel with world

            — sloped
            — selved

            — samed
            — unseen

            — cover
            — overever

            — endable
            — appearable

            — so as
            — to be

            — the longest muscle
            — the psoas muscle

            — babble
            — appariddle pupae

            Emoting through every trill
            — its own blooded — why not

            ° ° °

I was one nation
Given to find another
As people intubated
By people

The human elegy
Of a bone
Looking for its spine
to talk to itself, and see, what it, gets out, of it

What hardship-in-harmony
Sounds like
What difficulty makes out of
Sounds like

My thong exposure
I wore below
My thing exposure
I've decided to thing exposure — to see what I get out of it

Two strikers
Two wind slaps
Onna concrete bloom
Two pedals

Thinkers be relevant
Ass homes
Say one
Twice blinkers

Two strikers
Slap concrete bourgeoisie
Pedals                — twice the flat on bone scrap
Strikers              — twice the jibber

                           — Amalie asigos — saying what you slay
As a referential truth bomb

I don’t think twice and I’m still alright

            ° ° °

            I can hear how you’re layering
            What you’re telling me

            Can you just tell me how my layering is what
            You’re tellering — talk to yourself, see what you get

            I’ve written about the well-crafted artist for years
            The perfectly assembled bohemian

            The dipped-hippy scavenger from the mountains
            Now urban yet patterned for nostalgia

            No matter how old you are
            The challenge is to intent the extant

            To intimidate the existent ear
            The existent near

            To frame one parable over a civilization’s other nearing
            Is to position distance as discovery — my point a to your point b

            What turns a people horizontal
            Can refine verticality to a lifelong turner — a talker who talks
                                                                                  — to see what getting is

            ° ° °

The clue to the unsettled organism —
             — that it is constantly surprised in origin
In the suffer of deeply ecstasy
             —yetly fingered by existent will

To be the pound on a settled skydrop
             — the ripped discovery, uplifted
By constant repetition
             — to talk and see what gets of it— why not

                                                        when in doubt
                                                                                slip into language
                        one you don’t own

            ° ° °

To engage — in a relistening absorbed by its starting point
Make limit resettle its line
                                        — to see and get out of the way —

            Origin for the bringer, what is
            Crossing most lucid, where is —
            To be pliable or translucent — in the middle of a line — where limit re-turns
            In the sprung turn

            To see what sun gets, to talk to sunself
            To jam shut a jibber against the setting sun
            A logarithm looking for its city
            Periphery — as possible climb — why not

            ° ° °

The story arranged in sequence is not human in origin
Metamorphed by lifetimes of fluctuation

How spirals pull in ways arranged by can’t, or don’t, or why
Where the porous turn — in the myself — declares a reveal — to the self, refracted

My deconned element — the fractured aghast, accumulating eek of echo
My nicely decent inkblot, this page — resoiled

                          And here, the enter announces its beginning
                          — to talk to myself, to see where beginnings enter
                          Portal out of lineage, out of the — word to word
                          — the climb re-listens

                         The gather, verbed in sinew — by luster, to see — to get out and see
                         to talk to myself and see — to see what talking to myself sees
                          To the seeing of what talking to myself, gets me
                          gets out of me — the why not in myself

            ° ° °

            And here, so as to begun — something close to spillage
            or at least to sponge — something to come back to
            so as, to jammer the babble — and there, society enters

                                                    re-listening to it all
                        the doubt, the day, the harbor —
                                                    — what we, to see, get out of it

Note: This piece was written for a symposium presented by The Flow Chart Foundation entitled, “Thirteen Million Pillars of Glass, A Gathering,” which celebrated the 60th anniversary of John Ashbery's book The Tennis Court Oath. While speaking about creating early experimental work, work that no one would ever hear, he said, “Why not talk to yourself and see what you get out if it.” This piece emerged out of those words.

Poet, performer, and editor Edwin Torres is the author, most recently, of Quanundrum (Roof Books, 2021), Xoeteox (Wave Books, 2018), Ameriscopia (University of Arizona Press, 2014), and editor of The Body In Language: An Anthology (Counterpath Press, 2019). He has performed his bodylingo poetics widely and has received fellowships from NYFA, The Foundation for Contemporary Arts and The DIA Foundation, among others. Recent anthologies include New Weathers: Poetics From The Naropa Archives, The Difference Is Spreading: 50 Contemporary Poets on Fifty Poems, and American Poets In The 21st Century: Poetics of Social Engagement. He lives in New York.

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Founded in 2020, Three Fold is an independent quarterly based in Detroit that presents exploratory points of view on arts, culture, and society in addition to original works in various media, including visual art, literature, film and the performing arts. We solicit and commission contributions from artists, writers, and activists around the world. Three Fold is a publication of Trinosophes Projects, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.