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About this Poem 

“This excerpt is from a book about Occupy Oakland and related political struggles. It attempts to find forms of representation adequate to the social and affective contents of the historical conjunctures that have sprung up in Oakland, California and elsewhere over the last few years.” 

—David Buuck

                             

from "We Do the Polis"

David Buuck

Pent up
in a narrow

compass
and shortened

on every side
by the neigh-

borhood
of walls


These veterans
of future wars

handing out
the PTSD

brieflets
before

the mess
to come

*

Were verbing
swerved

and swayed
into sieves

maneuvering
toward

fissures
in the line


Swallowed
the scare quotes

and choked on
what hung there

in the air
around me

stripped of that
security

*

A field
of intensities

pulse through
a set

of others
coaligned

in throng
song


What poetry
is this

happening
too fast

to count
the syllables

in each throat's
retort

Copyright @ 2014 by David Buuck. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-a-Day on August 21, 2014.

Copyright @ 2014 by David Buuck. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-a-Day on August 21, 2014.

David Buuck

David Buuck is, along with Juliana Spahr, the coauthor of An Army of Lovers (City Lights, 2013). He lives in Oakland, California.