Protective Immediacy



Rod Smith






for Josh





Table of Contents


The Boy Poems 9

George, Rick, Boris, Harold #2, Woodward, Harold, Simon, Larry, Lucifer, Meredith, Vector, Bert, Mel, Bailey, Dutch, Edmond, Arthur, The Buddha, John Fitzgerald, & Aaron

The Classics 33

The Responsibility of Intellectuals

The Sublime Object of Ideology

The American Evasion of Philosophy

The Prison Notebooks

The Body in Pain

The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

Write Like Soap 43

A Grammar Manikin 61

Protective Immediacy 77

Poem Composed of A.G. & C.B. suggested by S.J. & beginning with a line from Duncan

XCVII ("she knows who she is")

Protective Immediacy

the love that is truly a refuge for all living beings





The Boy Poems




Humor is a process. Depression
   a useful first step.

          —Ian Scholes








Mink skin
    is mission's
  abroad & upgrade & detrained
    "take you to the empty place
 in my
    fire engine"

-- the fake
actual --

Use form 290666654B1A stroke & overprint dash.

the actual
on the makeshift






Dice and then try

The character developed a sincere expression

"In life" as more motley arranged the room

recedes    Some attempt at singularity

They say grandiose about a bank and guarontee

If I seems slightly distracted it's because

The birds lost again






colliding & colliding

more than mixtures

more than access


treacle & comely 

the social spores

goad & appease


mercurially incensed

smother domed

supper cones





Harold #2

Speaker: Agon means

that ache you can

really see, right?

non-speaker: in some

x, the gross national

awkward. Oh hell,

Speaker: "Prove it"--

non-speaker: Special lights

I blow then sip, brains

dumped over pumps, etc.

Speaker: Diet across

that; then what?






Javanese trailers inching

backward through the

hooch. Soon as it

reduxes we'll hop

on by. Zoner sinks

maudlin, marriage,

mercurial, moribund







by the way,
radical theory will always 
be quickly institutionalized,
and real experience cannot but
pass into spectacle.
There is room for regret, but
not for analysis. 
write your representative about
these concerns.






      Supreme kook.

     Void arrangement 
qua mama clock--

the videop
as mimicking

 Viably zonk.

 Visibly clunk.






The implicit is

Arrival, approach

impasse-- a hand issuing from a grasp--

These alternatives cannot be harmonized.

But harmony sucks anyway.







yet certainly contrived.

      The vice is
      the victim. One time
without looking

    the barnyard needed
some sorta transfusion. One time

a dick like that was;




   your caricature--

note lip

at lease

no ease







Viaduct off-spring of a slinkie


acutely vivid--


dyspeptic area code
yet recombinatory, on ceremonial
disturbed water stoop

Say the sound
&/or slay the swingline

Some say need
is a statutory explanation
of the mobility
of synchronicity.

Most of them are guilty
of democratic leanings.






Eeking like a sandled
strand of tree stands.

More often


      arterial in his

the circles

seep products
clearly designed
for accurate, moss washed
bunker toes.






        Jones of a dimmer
on that mattress stand ain't it.


all the attention
it syrupy &
mode as of
the and the

desirous padded sorcery.

not very.






His cosmology major falls like a free compass
point through the breakthrough of all emotional
life. A puritan background psychically fused
with the interdemensional thought-form of Portland
to produce a cathode ray capable of power-crazed
crop circles-- This is the heart of all living
systems-- The workshop mode flows formatively
across the morphogenetic light-born attractor
at the focal point of time and reemerges as
the Diet Coke stain on Bert's disintegrating
mostly purple tie-dye. Once, during his annual
abberation, it appeared to sweep out an eclipse.






The same in a lesser sense
In a scene similar to the former
In full course as if scattering
In a variant of a sign
& the equipoise which it suggests
A youthful figure hovers over raised hands
Another reading reverses this






Occupies the time between
this sleep & this sleep.

The formative mystery inherent
in America as objective act.

Die to the bygone or bleed
on a borrowed timecard. Geeze. 







Fresh pea soup (above)
flavored with mint
leaves, apples and
sherry, then thickened
with cream

There are worse, much worse, things than this.

Some passages are crazy-- they are the products of a
mind no longer master of its fantasies, no longer
able to segregate fantasy from fact;

   Small wonder then that one did not want
to let go of all this, that one opposed in every
conceivable manner a theory which involved for
him who accepted it the right and the challenge
of a hitherto unknown now undreamed-of
freedom of thought and elevation of mind.






  His genius at least includes
ceilings. A journey wouldn't not
see the miniscule ethic as gradation
of food movement. Seek
monetary garnishes. Dr. Kissinger
shouted. He looked panicked.
"Are these copies yours?"

he asked.






The fuse aggravates
the atypical, yet alone there
with some ink
        industrious, incapable

choreography in the twinite chamber





The Buddha.

   At Multiples, Inc., in New York, he produced Star
(1971), a four-panel Plexiglass mirror with a brightly colored zodiacal whimsy silkscreened across the surface. The place where we were, but in another room. I know many artists who exhibit only a fraction of what they do so as to keep a chosen image of their work in the public eye.





John Fitzgerald.

--if ever in fact traces of free labor did exist…

I sense no longer the sense of this life's sense.
But rather am secreted by initial conditions.
I'm unhappy here
it seems rather
ignorant, this country
we agree we agree
the fates
they agree
the fumes
agree also it is
one of the things we like--
Dioramas vouch-safe
portals of light realization.

we believe we believe

the ache
decides for itself

and the fortunate
have found everything already here

the bloodstream
in the growth on a headline
All this at the cost
of religion itself, ‘Power'
and ‘accident' are but
names for the causal chains…
that absence or
Demographic Questionnaire
it perturbs the crustaceans after all
you're wrong about clarity
I'd rather just sit
and watch the game
On the American Forces
Radio Network severance
of regained glossolalia
What's that little plan
you live in?
the failure, the inherent
ask & you shall ask
crack this?
crack who?
Look up
on the lip
of the fool
are formal constraints
for fools. Freud
enjoyed the variable
refrain of the meritorious
surf & slipped on his
tile-colored tunic. The rushes
had shown him
that residual dystopic
impediments lay among the
legally blind objects
in the least of our
collections. But I
don't know what happened
to what happened. We lock
our keys in our surrealism.
--it is not thought that needs--
The dawn fills
the naked
& coughing
takes the true
tympany out the tongue
of the crystal teeth. A
jaundiced secretive
sergeant-like wind
soaps awake the rickety
temple-- it
is all one
bureaucracy, the caulked
occasion of us cradling
& carving & not crazed &
for most of the day
The great
enemy of clear language
is insincerity. It is not
easy, in the biography under
review, given the power of the
US propaganga system,
foisting more than a fair
share of the ritual indecency
on a flip diagnosis
of the savage beauty
we surround.
Forever isn't everlasting.
Tomb this dream of same.
They doom the lettuce
an appliance deserves…
If anything is excellent
or praiseworthy--
think about such
things. Time is money.
Thank you for your time.






    This morning we found ourselves covered with snow that had

fallen during the night. If a lion could talk, we would not understand him. Dear father, what do you want to think? This part of Ohio smells like cheap lunchmeat. We ran out of hill I need a hill behind me it helps. This morning we found ourselves covered with snow that had fallen during the night.










The Classics








The Responsibility of Intellectuals

The sun is not gutted
or out on tour. The back-slap
of facticity is lost
on the F Train or else
available only
in outer space. The people
of Hanover, where they
make Utz, are genuine
with regard to their enthusiasms.
The essential writings
see them & say their adventure.
& yet, somehow unassailed,
is absolutely nothing.
The barber's concerns meld
or mesh with the cosmetologist's.
They are free.
The word pusillanimous
enters a conversation there, in Hanover,
& does not return. It has
gone home. Judgment
regarding this is not
worth a Knicks ticket.
If you place everything
you own in Hanover
it will disappear.





The Sublime Object of Ideology

A Nestea before the sex show
& a full length sofa bed
to teach the Cantos from--
this represents the temporal
hidden within the temporal.
The grapes though expensive
are "unimpaled."
Liquidity of the mischief,
a moist tint
love song on a breeze I
Do not feel
the high Titanic clockwork
when I touch her
or do I? Book of Life,
a new translation,
please. Pretty please.





The American Evasion of Philosophy

I'm dialing in & I don't want
to say it but
"your in-joke or mine"
comes to mind just as the machine's
signal beeps -- it's
kind of custardy
…bonded and
capriciously acerbic
(we're talking beyond any "unsired" synchronous here)
but about Pepsi
I'd just like to know
& don't -- it's a good deal --
sincerity's cotton belt
or Philly's new brew
How she then rethinks me
makes me
buy more wastepaper, american
waste paper, genuine
only as a symbolizing esthetic gesture
but still
like a sunbeam





The Prison Notebooks

they keep calling it "flour"
when the gunshops require
but nothing is toll-free
it goes by too quick
the profound is what is





The Body in Pain

as opposed to what?

surreptitious & senile song-pus
zounds in the aquaint-port's temperate
Nile of metonomy-projection

the body of nubs takes it's muss to us


celibate   infinity





The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

two airplanes meet
and fall in love.


& is not true

& is not this right.
I am a turnip.


if it all went up in smoke
all perception would be by smell

"you don't trust many people
& the ones you do trust leave"

a poem is a fracas
with a poem is a stew





sorry about the reference to Oz


sorry about all this matter








Write Like Soap







We're tired.

Fire the create crate soled.

The life to get top

ought to leak decease;


There's no trap, only subtle cushion
gathers sanction.
sanctions trust,
turns up

The date

(or torque) of that which there
on our said to it, would accumulate.

ditch the grand
task adjusts us
juggling a tune who's
nude flourish
masks a fluted





the woodpecker looks for dead trees, we

must then seek repose, explicitly

made of clay-- you into Space

of inner-form hopefully

rice-bag as if listening

But they are not creative.
"brightly off the belly of a blimp"

is heard always from a distance…

allowing fancy to play with all the thought of pleasures
(The other model is also much discussed, I know) but only

to prohibit it, baso continuo--

I resolved to spend a night.





colophonic talk

(and it escapes)

fairy dust (which is secular

(which from passion

inseparable subsidizes the socially

undertaken loaf's

freewill (my O)

Spokes them totally (which is not inept &

"has a yen for Ben" &

in its nature conditions

the rotten-toothed medullars'

conglomerate lucidity





The infinite redigitation plays tub tourniquet on the love-concern suit.
Like I like italian food I don't like. Licks inside schism factory:

walled wood doubt: Walled arc of the rote circuit waste:

menace tense, motor flow, apt earnest holding--

      The refill regroups -- inker topple they is wooping with a work up a whipped if dubbed in up a footstool reading


menage a trois twine +— emoted donor

Couldn't we fill it with sand.





Coarse angel or coarse
right of fine

in its pusillanimous

the shapes tent-force

if co-decorous
apparatus for
or of
the turnstile axle
in the forsep of refuse:






incarcerate abstinence

            a slip

Gone as toward

& sit up upset voice--

unencumbered & overly


           ;the juice
           in the jot,

 don't paraphrase--

axe of context axe

they or them or Amoco
turn it off
(a thin film)
at the curbscrew
ruler corked





The cycle.

feverish perpetuator
in the caucasian crayon box--

minister impy
riding the
gunker to the
fallow perspective--

divining the meek absinthe / soothe
about ink--

        flotsam amidst kinky
       & purposive
       architectonic geyser--

 They keep eeking out
 enough about some Perfunctory
 goggles   enough about some
 ionized lecturers'
 agate gunk





Forty times icicle

devious--  forty-four times

comeuppance askew
in the cradle of the
evading museumification

             if an art ends in a Nissan…


The razor.
The nide oboe sides:

between the black nightshade
of the bittersweet morals
is certified
anchor come &
secret asynchronous
requiescat foam






jump-cut accompaniment

a cordoning skull & act
a light-perceiving piece of furniture

the mask ace
in the moot lesion

a total

cultural chunk derby

a strap that passes through
a restatement stagger

wander signature

circumpolar animus
& rural dean a dumb

back-lit abrasion

spasmodic center.

dust pulse.

spasmodic domes.





its its purposely
up-sent (ing…
up-sent inging)…

you can be nearly impossible

of form inker
(desk virus)
& the canned loam of language
like I like timed licorice

motet a





That common workplace left its impression on our work

nome a duc…       appearance colluded/


the real compl--  or in tha graey a commonsense aqua

Rooted real, impairisoned, too tooled to extract invasion almost our other maquette, more this sooning we operate closely a kind of marinated froth where mean things activast carnal and.




              , a mar
      on the soaked stone tooth


"generous"      that bee     that tomb that tune





Flare petals punt barbecue rep coc wicked marsh ought end.
For months the rising tactility. Fresh lanes of legs broom
from most to most. Suppose a side severs. Fill to it without
acting into more carriage return. Weed cosmogeny. Reckless
affect learns toil from year to date product code summary. Wier
to date, lest to fur, move to. Implode "we" --- form of tangerine,
The Era, "it's"

to = + , c omes  shift c, #s?      for x3

The foam, the lashing business of

the foam my love. Were it twere pleased

lead. Chapter heading & fled Edges, mast

plops kite by tie





Almost inc.       The rule of mall       More first get

  sap of mare

glided by on way back for almost =

how does it happen. purged of all intellectual sediment






import mortar plantiniridium
akin to so
seed oyster
liniment cap-a-pie





          (licks inside

won't subside. Mazes,

furiously significant, type

a person out of

adjusted circus belief.

       Just that


preposterous, pride & how

long it can talk, take it.





the simple persistent

List is
     of tilted   merit

     Durable access
depends on definite existence, George.
More of us like calling tomorrow

a way for-- listing proximity as contribution.

      perception, the rude

      act as tho a problem's there

sight a

waiting for








A Grammar Manikin









my bee beheld egghead star demon stuff like usual





Then came the punch line
more viscous than they said it was
In the words of Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington (title it)
ascot mock
ticko tock
gone quay machine
of nickle of kin
of Seth
the sequential
needle on the stet
or indecipherable mainframe canine tv-shirt
that's an aside
& so,
Flamey, just remember
truth serum tastes
just like chicken with
cheeze wiz
I wish
the multi-patricianal
bludgeon icker
weren't so
more flan papa.



& feel nonetheless
a cold
cyclic difficult kitsch
done lucid on the
bank's brink dictates
deep stuff--
we fold
& in so doing
are retold
via the fictive commode
of the multinational toad.





a loaded gesture that lets assonance underscore dissonance is
  a form of order within the identifiable classical Western nuclear

potatoes. Roast Potatoes
the pivot upon which
trans-informs enormous conceptual paste


The world would be a much better place if we all had
a well-articulated theory of implosion.





schmierkase schmo







jewels and binoculars
hang from the head of the mule


Botany Bay it
generative grampa graduation
cluck cluck


what we haven't constructed
in space is praised by kissing


--tonal autogamy
(as opposed to total sodomy)--





do you like my "lyric thrust" better than his
   pocket veto
I'm calm
and pluri-detailed desuetude
Part 4:
       Desuetude Precontract


a record having allotted loan or overhanging sciatic spill
Breathe deeply and know that you are attuning your spleen chakra





"your footnotes are too violent"









but at what point did she say to herself
I wanna be a wonk





or is it febrile


as Aquitaine
as gastro-rich


yr local Stop & Flop in a monastic context
"They're just too democratizing in their character."
especially when amplified by those counter-sorcerers called
in polite company
The Tantric Inter-American Flexibility Conference on Dramatic
Sensory Focus

    I am I because my little knowledge knows me


  1. It is a great annoyance to have so many wishes


      2. "less is less"






411 is a joke


4. which catalyzed the moment known as language riding

5. If, furthermore, you ask, "What is Buddha?"
It is like shouting your innocence while holding the loot


5.1 She/he likes your mysterious contemporary visual
poetry & proposes marriage


5.121 There were camera bunkers still standing
from the famous test

countless dark ineradicable expert musician attachments
ablating dimerous stereotypes
light all totaled
shakeable dedication
&* vanish
that is
they will.





the satisfied
probably have
many novels
and always
float in the air
freedom from confusion.
irremediably foreign and strange which is no
im-sign physically A-frame & came
in my fiction and flame to quake webs of light


I'm sorry we do not accept Pagans as payment


-- I said  I'm sorry we do not accept Pagans as payment

to kill a demon marry the most common decorative motifs.

a shaft
the rooms share



              follows the


       novice in the middle envy

administrative ruins
is perched

         painted origin


   And nothing  softens on a steep



square base

squat stupa

rebuilt flashlight

a frieze

of pillared



amminal or venomal

any applicable apotheosis here

clientele cliff clew-line
decoupage of thought-control
--we both felt a bit glum--
Revolutionary theory is now the sworn enemy of all
revolutionary theory-- light you also
intangible intake endstops
that's what I say

nay, the transnational will

let us literally

work with metaphysical tools.





away from repetitive particulars in a Neo-Sensory epithetical
skin-treatment flood tide
The good grease goes back goes in goes down goes under
Description is not necessarily distinct domestic debriefing

     yes, in gathering information
     the inflatable environment
     saw fit on your thighs, palms up
what does that mean
butterlamp think       cuculiform solitude
          so soldierly




I'm sawed

This is tin

embracery (title it)
the signifier / signified metathetic
makes us imagine
making dysyopia all better must
amount to the medieval ability to reparagraph
--say it ain't so brittle--
but the sum tottle seems to ink us out
sheepish science dealing & important
--neither Spain nor Plain--
a health-related basic thing that people matter more than money
This includes setup troubleshooting
& could by evil means make a bran-new recidivism good-oh
new paragraph
all abt yoga
good afternoon
good behavior





There's a humming-bird-size hawkmoth up here eating reporters







Protective Immediacy






Poem Composed of A.G. & C.B. suggested by S.J. & beginning with a line from Duncan


Eros naked in foreknowledge

dreamt grandfather needed many loves

amidst the make-believe blackberries

when the garden that I could be

betrays a long charm settling:

trash of the mind
trash of the world
sliding and then arrested--
blame to spike
breakfast and see a lifetime
in which ornate matter is dispersed like a bomb
-- relentless-- in my dark earplugs
-- relentless, flowers and buildings,
Sunlit Forelorn Reprehending Seepage
. . . . as a voice in a vision that's vanished.






XCVII ("she knows who she is")


for what we are, swart passion
"amount" (the liaison debt)
     six & 1/2 to one, or the Having will acquire
SILVER as the need's I
     and just as false
     "and just as false"
as chide triangulated mist sinks me or me
(rivulet of competent
purse & grave, a gravity
relent in peace to stand bled
& strain. each out to false.
to turbulence. to time before
that codes grief cycle
      gist in the tones & riled re-wave
          says, and so is, and so the lowly
can be saved,
        but from
        & turbulent, the taste
          is troubled,
& an accordance
abuts transcendence
& crushes us, internal
for the thought doomed strong
does not tense in it
"we" are a crime
or foundations, effectively mist
felled before current events
a crisp descent, not innocent
          the complacent bit's history
              a cretinous
        aggregate, a young explorer, but the net
torque canned against the likes o

              that gaze
worn scrupulum's caste of ash
the torn internal
in the right honorable reticence
          take it back
hitting head moment
June 9th, ‘68
        Cape Thing
          off the coast of Superficiality
snored in a cone -- a brave deed
      you can drive around
      a somehow made not nascent
      rent by shade
--"maybe partying will help"--
    but within love's coy tract
shave that soldered salve (ouch)
    is formed or is our failure or is
a tongued environment's impetuous debility
they keep us locked up layers of non-sent slapping
    love in the purified finite
a gasping torqued thought-finish
on the effective mist
    this ludicrous business
this sadly ossified empty
v      final, injured, found waning
   an orchestrated probable praised by motion
it's circuit that again torn is thought they locked
     blazing in the blazing
say to it this form's shunt seed
say to it "closure"
as a clanged jack assays a coral cloud-document breath of
tazed intent
in the growth aglow
    the bombed fundamental
      re-bombed futz of gut-us consumpt
& wayward     leaning on a star





Protective Immediacy




You're always suspicious
that you may not be doing
what you think you're doing.
Cigarette a letter to oneself
she writes "paw or paw"
on the large canvas &
never "sold out" their fetishization
of autonomy-- the volcidestrians
are wiping the Natl. Capital Area
with fuckin candy rainbows
You're always suspicious
that you may not be doing
what you think you're doing.





actually she got quite a lot
for their fetishization of autonomy
tho nearly nothing for
sleeping crap
by Walter Benjamin
infinity seams
the body (between
space) decanters
the formal acuity
in a self-regarding rarity
K is for cathedral
& John is telling you
to help the Lizard tribe,
will you?





Things are not OK
Ismene, not several, & to drink
books in an unsurpassable
story which is precisely
misled space possessed
& bled eyebath coupling &
nonrepresentational in the scare quote
salve in the cistern
of flamboyant earth-abundant
in the graving motion
as the upsurging
presence dies.





presence dies

in the lunge of trademark tradewind
"giving" -- all night,
she is gone so
a cigarette tells
sleeping crap
of the unopened pack
of the latin word for cartoon
things among things
totally strange
the ritual preliminaries
the rages of attachment
bewilderment and evasion





in the scare quote salve
they're fixing the next
totally strange
illumined delusion
A beautiful ornament with us
extent, & Big Bouvon Fuller
has a blanket he uses to
carry conceptions of
ghosts-- his face, a mandala
of a thousand star clusters
a Baby Monitor Music
of identity to soothe
conflict & nightmares inside
offerings of flame, & of speech





there's no storm before the calm
keeping the stopping still
   offering instead of living
& planted, Plato's ideas
dispute sharpness
   prefer Sappho
prefer [perfect] good [       ]
  [               ] iny
   vast surely day

















But, Dr Williams
they die miserably,

& the light goes on on the
kneeling Ave Maria no sun
shining -- come --
looking wood

hold off

so that we could meet
in my bag --
close I felt
it was content
even though I still didn't
history -- you can read it --
you can snow --
Bernadette cupped it in her hands
a hole filled with cured place

because & in response

I read the manuscript
thinking about the fog
glass shook &
tell everything afraid beside the fruit
of a cross town bus
to happen to
police we have a strange stolen
love at the moment
to you w/ a poem some said nothing
was trembling
is like a popsicle
you can read drinking itself
to see it script
with no sharp edges
the last part always
falls off
on the damp pavement behind us
the creative process
on yr clothes





And one with trembling hands clasps this cold head
And fans him with her moonlight wings, and cries;
Our love, our hope, our sorrow, is not dead



most other instruments are a surcharge don't-ya-know shed
beneath abandoned teeth-- flats and naturals--
the lurid shine interprets the signatures, keys, sharps &
half-lit lonely weirdos of nature






the love that is truly a refuge for all living beings


Thermal Deformation of The Active Element Of A Periodic Mode
like the previous
moment of a ball of foam, but with regard
to the sounds that were, so to speak,
thrown away
through the process of making other pieces,
like the sprout from a rotten
seed, water music, impurity-induced
self-trapping of holes
and minority-ion percolation
like the erection of a eunuch,
like antennae,
and some were
like interruptions
of photoelectric
cells, living became something quite long that could be cut
up, stabilization of
stimulated extended-life emission like
thoughts of avarice, immorality,
wickedness, and hostility
in a bodhisattva who has attained tolerance,
photochemical, or
any other form of punctuation
the effect of the four
refractive indices
like the perception of
color in one blind
from birth like
the fun of games for one who wishes to die like
Blackbody radiation when I whispered it and cadences
became things

free of conceptualization, an empirical
luminescence discharge the
syllable passion spectra into the electric
fanning halide laser
a vast anomalous
reactive tangent
properties of properties dent
in welding this
weak collision, Aeons
of foci-- tunable, coherent,





Protective Immediacy by Rod Smith

Rod Smith is his exact height and has basically quit playing golf. This precision and narrowing of focus permit him to arrange many parts of speech in interesting patterns, kept flat within this book but ready to spring out like so many Q-tipped Slinkies as the age-old hinge flexes. Working within the post-Olsonian precept "what does not explain is the will to explain", he destroyed the footnotes to this blurb before they were written. Too late!--the magnet hidden in these texts has already blanked your memory and begun to teach your thumbs to oppose again. --Tom Raworth

Rod Smith's Protective Immediacy is a wonderful book. It is also a worldly one. The works included here emerge from within a struggle--one with both political and personal overtones. But, though the struggle is in and of the world, it is undertaken without weariness; these poems are full of vivacity and often they are even hilarious. Propelled by a slightly hard-edge compassion, the writing sets aesthetic asymmetries against social asymmetries. In depicting the coexisting of these modes of asymmetry, Smith creates a provocative portrait of the world. Protective Immediacy is charged with life; the result is intelligent and thrilling. --Lyn Hejinian

This is a sophisticated poetry whose pleasures come from sounds felt right in the mouth while reading silently. And from the feeling, now and then, that one is exactly in among the gears of mind, however it works, what we don't know. --Alice Notley


Rod Smith was born in Gallipolis, Ohio in 1962, and grew up in Manassas, VA. He is the author of In Memory of My Theories, The Boy Poems, and The Lack (love poems, targets, flags . . . ). A postal worker for six years, he moved to Washington, DC in 1987. He is editor of the journal Aerial and publisher of Edge Books. Smith has coordinated reading series at Bick's Books, the District of Columbia Arts Center, and, currently, at Bridge Street Books in Georgetown.

ROOFBOOKS• NEW YORK ISBN: 0-937804-78-9 • $9.95



Roof Books

new york


Copyright © 1999 Rod Smith.

ISBN: 0-937804-78-9
Library of Congress Card Catalog No. 99-61352

Book design & typography by Barbara Campbell
Cover design by Deborah Thomas
Cover photo: New York Public Library

Versions of these poems have appeared in The Baffler, B City, Cathay, Explosive, The Germ, I Am A Child, The Impercipient, Lingo, New American Writing, Open 24 Hours, Philly Talks, Phoebe, Primary Writing, Tool: A Magazine. Some of these poems appeared in the Potes & Poets limited edition Protective Immediacy (1998).The Boy Poems was published as a chapbook by Buck Downs Books in 1994. "A Grammar Manikin" appeared as a special feature in Object#6.

Roof Books are distributed by Small Press Distribution,
1341 Seventh Avenue, Berkeley, CA. 94710-1403
To order call: 800-869-7553

This book was made possible, in part, by a grant from the New York
State Council on the Arts.







are published by the
Segue Foundation
303 East 8th Street
New York, New York 10009