Prosthesis of PomPom into VeRT

This poem was submitted to PomPom magazine, with c.c. to Rod
Smith, fine editor of Aerial (second magazine ever to publish work
eventually appearing in Doubled Flowering: From the Notebooks of
Araki Yasusada), to whose poem in PomPom # 1, "Destrukticon
of the Unrenude,"

it "replies," made largely as it is of the "Destrukticon's"
strange language. Smith courteously wrote back to me
(despite suffering, he said, from jet lag and hangover), expressing
his enthusiastic approval. I wrote back to Rod and said, thanks

But this is not the end of the story by a long shot, for not having
had any word from the PomPom editors, I wrote a follow up query,
asking if they had received the poem. Did you get it? I asked.
Around a month or so later I finally received brief answer. It said
thank you for sending, Kent. We'll get back to you in a few more

Say what? A few more months? Well, unfortunately the doctors
haven't given me that long, so with apoplogies to the PomPom
editors, I must move on...

Therefore, PomPom, one might say, is now extended into VeRT (a
magazine that responds to submissions with quite a bit more
agility and verve), so that VeRT, in a way, is now partially
PomPom, a VeRT with a kind of poetic prosthesis inserted into its
side. Looked at another way, PomPom is now partially VeRT, a
PomPom with a crystal catheter inserted into a cavity of its body.

And this, via poetry's magic, as it were, is so, and life, as Kenneth
Koch said in his final poem, goes on.

--Kent Johnson

P.S. I do hope the PomPom editors will still include me in the table
of contents of PomPom # 3. My suggestion would be that they
simply provide a link with my name to this page of VeRT. (I greet
you, PomPom readers of the future, should you have crossed here!
Just as you feel when you look on the river and sky, so I felt;
just as any of you is one of a living and tiny sub-culture, I was one
of a living and tiny sub-culture, too.)


Getting It Good in a Loaded Time

People will always look up into a magnolia.
It doesn't matter if the stars in the lookalike
branches are just trace metals: the metals the
reason is made of, the reason the heart gets
raked again and again against the caseloaded
"me"... Even under the spell of harsh twenty-
year-old language hashish, even with desert-dry
throats and stick-brittle bones, people will look up.
They'll look up through the teepee's cone and rise
into the blossoming reference book of the tree. And
at the sign of "don't," they'll almost always exhale,
and go "Ah."