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Recorded for Poem-a-Day, August 16, 2016.
About this Poem 

“I’d say that ‘with grief with fury with action’ is a slingshot of a poem. The image at the end would be the shot. Let’s let the circular and parenthetical rhythm of the poem be the sling. It’s a poem that wakes up already in over its head, our shared situation of an overload disguised as accruing, which, in the end, is the language of our culpability. I suppose it’s also a syncopated polemic against the experience of computer screens like the one you (and I) are looking at.”
—Ed Pavlić

with grief with fury with action

when we lose track of the person   not to be
confused with that democratic fetish
‘the individual’   when we lose track of that particle
that permeable pool of plasma
the person   and take human reality
to be a solid matter (most often
male) of people’s (often enough clotted
into mobs   often enough mobs of so-
called ‘democratic action’). . . Jesus
Christ let’s just call it conscious intention
lashed to the cleated post of mute
inheritance   we need to be very careful
in that situation   when persons are
pushed (ultimately at gunpoint)
to feel that they have nothing to
lose and that can feel (though most often
it tingles numbly) like freedom
but it’s not   freedom is never that
we must be ve-ry careful    more
careful than anyone can actually be  
because it’s dangerous when it feels
like anything’s possible
but nothing can happen   very
dangerous when it feels
like anything can be put immediately
on display but somehow
nothing can be revealed   to live
in a world (so-called) where
everything’s within reach but nothing
can be touched   maybe
it’s a terrible truth (quite possibly
a truth of parenthood) that for any one
thing to be known (or touched)
everything else must be complexly
felt   as if thru an infinitely
sensate dilation   pure aperture   maybe
that is the open and awestruck light of love
and it’s very simply never ever
simply just that   which is the spark of art
iculate speech   an S curve pulls parabolas
thru a syncro-mesh gearbox   a sudden break
in low clouds off the coast
and into a remorselessly gray sea
of eyes pours a silver sheen   a glistening pool of pain

Copyright © 2016 by Ed Pavlic. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on August 16, 2016, by the Academy of American Poets.

Copyright © 2016 by Ed Pavlic. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on August 16, 2016, by the Academy of American Poets.

Ed Pavlic

Ed Pavlic

Ed Pavlic is the author of Let’s Let That Are Not Yet: Inferno (Fence Books, 2015).