‘Dawn’ by Walker Storz

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Dawn

Dawn, little speaks

The world does not
want another face
Rising eternally out of
Clay, or mud,
Or pyrex

I am wearier than I
have ever been

But—-for a moment—-warming in the
kind of dawn that comes once every
2×1000 to the tenth power
millennia

A shredding dawn,
a world drowning in a
Sunkist and blood
swirl—the maw
Of the old and new
Worlds
Swallowing.
One of the vortices we wait
For

I can only think three words a
millennium
I have been cursed from birth

I am every name from history, but some more than others, and only at the tail end of
Every millenium

I can speak into the orange glow that I knew people once, that I wanted people once, that I liked to play

The blood maw swirls again. The window fades out, I am on a playground ride around this place.

I pick three words a millenium. There’s a rhythm—a waltz, a swing on this rough circular path, around a specific school with brownstones and a small charged-looking green courtyard. And a lilt—always a tune carrying through these thin honeycombs of space time.

I know I’m coming back around on the swing again, and there’s a
feeling of excitement then fear, fading, recognition, of something as if at the periphery of my image of thought. Something I can never see, like a knot that would allow me to undo all of this.

I get three words on my way back.

Love you __
Her name an incantation that makes my mind Slate tilt a certain way
And the backjangling slightly off round , slight lilt of printer laughing at teacher on the projector light on way around
Me why I

Who goes here

Can’t wait there

Please help me

I love ____

____ help me

I Looove you

Am I dead

Sun does dawn

Let me in

I hate me

Let me out

‘Jesus Christ (dionysos)’ and ‘Fever’ by Walker Storz

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Jesus Christ (dionysos)

My veins glow
sea-green,
luminescent, bulging
They have grown
with wills of
their own, fat
snakes
Writhing into the
world with the sickly
vigorous force of
Birth—
God has spoken
to me
He is staring
at me from
the light fixture
in the ceiling
His eye bores
into me.
It is worrying my
flesh, inscribing
red angry
circles.
I sat there in the
corner with
my wine bottle and
shaking, ecstatic
flesh
I have suffered for
you, father. But
God did not
care. He was absent,
and I was
talking to his shadow
splayed
across the world; in
electrical sockets and the

faces of strangers
It is my hope that
you, Jesus
Christ, pale king,
Fill me with fire, make my
heart gold,
my feet brass, my
tongue silver; that you
take
my weakness and
sanctify it, make it
burn
It is my great
hope that
you make my
hope worthy of
waiting, that you
make the world worthy of
itself

Fever

Bright, bright
nausea
A bone
cringeing and
spilling its contents
into a toilet
My skin hot
and red as a
blistered, dying
star
The charred
sun sloughs off
its skin onto
me—h bombs,
Belsen
The light of the
bad angels
playing on a
wooden television
disintegrating into
snow
In this bed
in a small
yellowed attic
I writhe around
under the
covers.
It is so hot
I think it must
be a witch’s
oven
Yellow fat melting
into a
long gold
shriek
and I can’t
breathe, not

without ice
After an
interminable silence—
the kind of long
wait after you
beg for
help and then
give up on
any response
I slip into
delirium and
dream
I am still
invaded by
weakness, it
sits sticky in
all of my
cells
At my
aunt’s house
at Christmas
I carry a vase
to the table,
heavy with
pain and
confusion, even
in my dream; and
trip and
fall, throwing the
vase into the
air. It smashes
into the
shiny wooden
floor like a
crystal dirge
The sky seems to
open up
as it must have
for Prometheus:

In preparation for
an executioner’s
hand reaching
out of the
heavens to take its
tax

And I kneel in the
glass as my
father yells—
his face a
blurred mask of
high, cold fury
a silver bellow
pressing me into
the floor
I try to clean up the
glass that I am
kneeling in but
I am so heavy,
pinned to the
floor, my knees
encrusted with
shards and
bleeding
The party
paused—every
face contorted
slow and
fixed in aspic and
anger
I can’t think
beyond the
edges of this
circle
My mind in
its meatbox
retreating into

pain, the
conditioned aversion
immanent to the
broken cell
I am orthogonal
to the world, and
can never enter
it
So I must dance
around the
cross and
bare my chest
as an
offering
The malignant
chatter of the
party
comes back into
focus
and I bathe in
these shards
and laugh as
I stumble trying to
right myself
I feel a hand
In the small of
my back,
pressing me
down, then
another hand on the
back of my
head, grinding my
face into the glass
dust
Maroon laughter and
blood of the same
color, but
tinged with

velvet black, bursting
out of my face and
knees
dancing ribbons threading
their ways to a central
knot
dancing
streams running to an
estuary
I am a blunted
dagger and I
wish to
sharpen myself
Smoky, soft, red-brown
light
seeps into the
room from
under the floorboards
a surging
cold, grey-green
salt-water
maelstrom throws
me down
I struggle to
breathe and
find the center
A whirlwind of
ions, neither
friend or
foe
Now it laps at me
gently
As the crown of my
head feels
air

A cold wind
runs cold and
then hot
all the way to
Hell;
the prisoners
shiver in
delight. I am
somewhere else.

‘Glass Cacophony’ by Walker Storz

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Glass Cacophony

 

One of the four glass
walls that surround me
shimmer; as if
winking at me.
I collect this
glint, this icy ember,
and add it to the
crystalline fire I am
stoking in my heart
Being mocked hurts.
But everything
mocks me—every
reflection and
sparkle from the
grain of the
smooth glass
I am not being
watched, despite
the fact that I am
fully exposed. This
makes me burn with
cold anger. Why
should I be forsaken
here? I feel the
lack of God’s eye
mocking me. A
cool contempt; as if
I am not even worthy
of rebuke or
punishment. I am
His abandoned
child.
I can’t break the
glass. I have tried to
punch through, but
my hand glances off;
a graceless slant
slide

—a reminder that
I am diagonal to
God’s eye, his cool
rebuke is always
oblique, I always
glance off
A thread that
unravels and
can’t be folded back—
an irreversibly
fried egg white
And our ancestors’
fall from grace;
a swift fall; and
we have tried
ever since to
tumble back up to
Heaven
without a catalyst?

A great light or
heat must
buoy us—the
energy from a
sacrifice; the
pain that is
unnecessary,
unreasonable; black
blood swirling upwards
into a vortex
Remembering flight–
thinking of the
apex of a
circle; jumping from
the nadir
I turn the
glass into diaphanous,
sticky fabric-skin;
a cocoon—suddenly

warmer, lit yellow from
within, the
nocturnal, forest-
dwelling light of
faeries
A miracle! I
part these
curtains and
follow the
yellow globules
of light, out of
this enclosure,
into a
clearing.
It smells like
singed hair
and the sweet,
sodden smell
of the air after
thunder
The air swirls
darkly, and
on the ground
surrounded by
greenery rustled
by conical
winds
I see a clump of
wine-red, shiny
matter; pulsing,
breathing
with no face,
no eyes, no
way to sense
except
intrinsically, a
young, earthen
god comes
swirling and
gushing into
the world–forming

its vessels from
energy from the
sun in the
earth’s core:
molten
souls propelling
the god into
being between
two gyres
Singing not
of blood, but
singing blood,
singing not
of the body, but
singing a body
beating a drum
bringing a
whirlwind of
atoms into a
shape that
flickers, then
coheres
Forming an
ivy-colored, helical
ladder
that reaches
vertiginous heights
weaving a spiral to the
clouds

‘Scotomize’ by Walker Storz

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image by paul klee

Scotomize

Part I

I am a bad
seed, grew
rotten; a

Broken genesis,
wings clipped
at first fall

A circle breaking
and thus
losing its
momentum—losing the
horrible center

Proteins misfolding,
disorder spread
like

The body
breeding its
own madness

Cells limping,
losing their
integrity

Losing the
ability to
discriminate

No filters,
brain dirty and
hot—the smell
of

Rotten leaves
and car
engines leaking

Do you hear
me?  I cannot
shout;
I have
no audience,
I fail to
register myself
to the world

It will not
tremble like my
taut flesh, but
I wish it to

I whisper to the
world.  I tell it
lies through the
windowscreen.

I tell it to become
warped like
I view its
crystalline, perfect
germline and
insert my bad
thoughts into
It… I
birth small
hates: hatelets,
cubs, that will
be nurtured
by the cold
impassivity of
Nature, that
will suck
granite and sulfur and
cold
pond-water out of the
teat
of the world

In this eternal
present, no
time is redeemed

And I have
nothing to
do but wait for
redemption,
wait for a
time future or
time past to
emerge—
bacterium forming
from airless swamps

This whirlpool
is outside of
time—time
always comes with
room to breathe
but there is
none here

Neither segmented
worm-line of
time or the
sacred gelled
time of the gods

The whirlpool
collapses all time into a
now that
sounds like a
moan.  A now
that is a
“Please, no” to
life.  A now
that is begging
this now to
stop

The sirens screaming
no as they
are held down and
raped by
travellers…
The seductive
“No” that emerges
from the abyssal
entrails of
infinite pain

This is now from
the
center of the
world

Hope is a
phantom light that

wrecks ships

a mirage made of
bad air

A taunting
sweet
voice in the night
enveloping a muffled
scream

Part II

We have
whirled back
to the point

of origin. We
have the knife
in our hand

We have the
choice to
end things
before they
start–

I stare into
a glimmering
egg
light, and I
start to
tremble.  I
am finally
here, a place
beyond the
flux of life

A ground in
which being
and becoming
is birthed

I see
spheres growing
like supernovas
in stunned
silence

I hear Sylvie’s
voice,
behind my
ear, softly
I am with you
now

 A sense of
warmth and
expectancy
circles me;
whirling black
drapes

I breathe more
and more
heavily as I
approach the
point of
light
at the center

When I was
13 years old
I ran through
wind and rain
for 13 miles
before I
collapsed

I remember the
pain fondly, so
different from
the confused
dull pain and
delirium of
my abortive life
after

Lights flicker
on the soft wall at the
edge of this
clearing, playing
more memories

As cave-lit
shadows

Sylvie and I
embracing
in her
room, the
first I love
you

 I didn’t know
The line of
my life would
break
there, preparing for
another, greater
break–one I would
refuse to
feel until
far after it had
felled me

Then
Topanga Canyon,
spiralling into
view, a quickly
unspooling, shaky film
of gnarled pines
against yellow-
brown sand

and a line
traced: a
translucent
blueprint overlay
of a possible
branch of my
life writing
itself in time-
lapse

A bright hole
with charred and
bubbled
edges eating the
picture

Blackness intermission

I saw a white
room with
splashes of
angry red, a
woman being
split, a crumpled
face, covered
in a veil of
blood and
slime, pulled
out of
her

I felt a strong
pull
in my chest
and a feeling of a
wave
crowning on the
top of my
head

Now only the
light at the center
remains

The feeling of
Sylvie behind
me, a
whirling
pulse of
light in my
ears

I raise the
knife

A glittering
pure light floats
in front of me, staring
into me without
blinking

I hear soft, mocking
laughter, and the
chime of thousands
of bells

I drop my
hand and slash and
everything crumples

‘Hell Mouth’ & ‘July 2018’ by Walker Storz

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Hell Mouth

This is a true story but it’s not a story. It doesn’t have narrative form because to have narrative form there must be a beginning and an end–in other words there must be change. And nothing ever changes here.

I am in hell. I am in hell forever. I am being tortured and I have no idea why. If I had any idea why it wouldn’t be hell. You see, people think of punishment as having reason: “the punishment fits the crime” and so on… but in reality, punishment IS the reason. And if I knew why I was being punished, there would be some consolation to it–consolation that is forbidden to me. So I am punished, without reason. The pain is the reason, and the denial of reason IS the punishment.

I am here and my punishers are demons. They are not red or horned, there are no flames. This is more like a dimly lit warehouse, the demons grey-fleshed middle-managers with onyx eyes. But since part of the punishment involves continual washing of my memory and my personality, I cannot recall too much. There is a continual blurring and then sharpening. I gradually begin to retain awareness that I am indeed in hell, and then right when I get to the cusp of that awareness, my memory is reset. This process has an organic rhythm, like tides of blood under a midnight sun.

The real punishment of hell is loneliness. This is said so often it might as well be a cliche, but think of this as the most solitary solitary confinement. It’s impossible to convey the extent of this isolation without resulting to ponderous abstraction, but lets try anyway. You may never have known God in your life, but when you are forever cut off from him, you will know the difference, you will know it in your flesh. The way the flesh can sense storms, etc, in some elderly people, your flesh can sense the presence of God. You will miss this presence with every inch of your being. Your flesh will ache constantly with the worst kind of sickness and revulsion for being itself. It will want nothing more than to be free from itself, but it will never achieve that. It will want union with God, it will long for God like one longs for the warmth of the sun. You will try and remember what it felt like to be unhappy on Earth, in the normal sense of being unhappy. Because that was paradise, relatively speaking… that warmth of God on your flesh, the feeling of being alive.

It is hard to say if you are 1000 miles, or 1000 light years from God. It is hard to measure distances, all you know is that you are too far to get any warmth. You are in a place that must be hermetically sealed off from God and from everything that is good. This great distance touches even your memories. Every emotion, every affect that you remember from your old life–all of it feels impossibly distant. When you remember feeling happy it’s like you are looking at this happiness in a snow globe, you can’t feel it, it doesn’t enter your body. (It’s possible that this metaphor came to me because my boss here has a snowglobe on his desk in his office. It’s so hard to make metaphors when you have limited imagery at your disposal). Every memory I have is like a film projected on glassine. Usually I don’t try and replay these memories, even when you have them. It makes things worse, I often shudder involuntarily when watching them. I suspect that your torturers want you to view these films—these memories that gradually sharpen every so often. Hope is the instrument of your torture, and in this sense you are torturing yourself.

Continue reading “‘Hell Mouth’ & ‘July 2018’ by Walker Storz”

‘Sweat’ & ‘Revolver’ by Walker Storz

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Sweat

How many times
can you
rise up to be
beaten down
by a blunt wall–
Red, humid,
broad as a thoroughfare

 

Before failing

A lucid star drops
from the east, a
soundless bomb
Shattering like a
Vermillion mirror–the
soul reflected into
Itself, infinitude–each
piece a drop of
sweat. The star
crosses the equator–
tumbles toward
Hell, the
guts of Earth. A
place teeming with
sickening, writhing
life; life which is too
vigorous, which wants
to be free of its
skin.

Where is my
will? What is it
that says “I am
I,” or says “I will
not—not today” I
suppose it governs
by default. I am
too tired to put these
things to bed. My
body endures
obliquely–it does not
thrive, it does not
generate a will;
it sits in
itself, its opaque stink
of congealed time,
deadening of
nerve

Condemnation, debt,
remorse, duty—all
gravities with
different vectors.
Some pull from
the firmament,
some from below
the waters, from the
insides of the
earth.

The earth washes itself
of itself, and in
these rhythms is
a seasick nausea—
I, the sick, the guilty:
I am the vomit
of the body of the earth, and
I am like a tide
rolling back on
itself without
reason.

Revolver

Hundreds of doors
open and close a
minute: revolving glass—
whirring ceaselessly

Crystalline flashes
wink outward

Something flutters
in my chest
A nest births a flurry
of swallows
with damaged
wings, beating
a slant,
idiotic tune
in the air.

 

They peel off
and tumble
out of line,
smashing against
the inside of
my ribcage like
breakers, making
red sea-
spray, vapor
and choked cries

Below the heavens,

blue circles cull bodies, the
damaged sink
into heaps of slab,
Dust-piles at
the broken edge of the
clearing—like cream
separating from skim

 

 

 

 

God has ceased to
tend to this machinery.
The stove is on,
the clock
broken from its
trajectory, the
world a
mute, anxious scream.

‘Ariel’ by Walker Storz

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Ariel got off the phone with the disability lawyer.  A buoyant light was falling through his chest, tugging him down.

Her voice had been so kind and strong that he wanted to cry.  She was such a merciful executioner.  He decided he would fix her face in his mind, even though he’d never seen it and never would.  Her eyes would be green and vibrant, her hair black, her face firm but pitying.  She would hold back tears and stroke his hair with unseen hands the whole time, while he was walking into the white cloud.  He would become sleepier and sleepier, while every line and fine distinction disappeared, erased by atomizing fine shards of soft white light.  He would keep walking while every part of his body vanished.  Every part of her face would disappear but the great green eyes, hovering in the white gauze.  He would come closer and closer, beckoned by the strange, broken waltz that the white light in his chest sang in unfamiliar language. And now her eyes were shining with sympathetic tears.

Crying after having held back for too long runs the risk of totally dissolving a person, into the ether.  It is necessary to freeze totally, to dam up one’s lachrymal ducts, to prevent any intrusion; to protect against the corrosive solvents that would obliterate one without care.