1 Stuck again we came up with something else Tried gluing the cardboard shards of boxes To our heads and backs like The defensive plates and spikes Of dinosaurs we weren’t but were becoming Or drove out west like a movie we remember Where girls feet rest on the dash Window prism light listening to electric chatter And music seems part of the sunny world That is escaping last air from a thought balloon The gentle breeze backyard backdrop Of evergreen trees allows a long strand Of web the faintest visibility floating like This will be the last word ever spoken Or overheard no this will—Kalamazoo But then the Internet didn’t care anymore Though it went on recording every keystroke And whoever we were outside of information We stood together with our chemicals And held death a little closer to our whispering lips Now when we text it is barely the memory of bird song There might be some data or DNA left somewhere But with no readers who cares what bugs Are expressing remnants of after images and holes The whistle’s blown and we are unplugged for good 3 All spaces branded all space is branded Each gene known catalogued but totality’s Unknown totalities unknown plural Loops and overlaps and the spontaneous Production of nearly identical individuals Then is vichyssoise alive as edible coding? First they brand us radicals Then they eliminate the concept of the radical Lift this information through your chemical soup Loops and spirals and poetic gyres abound But—gimme shelter—lost lips spell no flies Shuttling chemical structure to hump new Chemical structures out of perpetual primal soup We want to be swallowed by this language No this language—nucleocytoplasmic shuttling Oft in dire like this weather this redactical Sun branch sun cloud reflects sun Methane bomb shelter gimme time went as we Species twiddled and sang to lamp light and Located our deep viral past on a map (you are here *) Realize we can’t keep saying we but muttering Totalities script bioinformation in scriptorium Cells copying thus where diversity lies origin lies But what’s the frequency, Kenneth Rexroth And what follows or fallows these fleet fields? 4 And then we extend the climate of our unknowing Despite false colour views and massive stacks of data The moment wasn’t about the symbolic after all The moment followed a bee Through the streets of Manhattan The earth spinning hot on its axis Was—or wasn’t—more like a tree falling in a forest Than it was like an instrument measuring CO2 On a mountain in Hawaii—but if a tree falls in a forest And everyone is already in that tree Having climbed there to get above rising waters Does it make any sound? Or is that Just the noise our limbs make wind-milling in space As we launch—indexical of our own distraction— Off the ends of our two hundred year old hockey sticks? But tell me, Cecilia Vicuña, if you can Is that bee the last fluttering bastion Of a cognition that we have undone in our doings? Or will the herd of boreal caribou coming behind us Sweep us around Columbus Circle one too many times? I know, it’s hard to stop coming to America— The waiting room is the size of the world Has a sign that says, “Welcome to the Anthropocene” And all the exits are jails furnished with Unassembled Ikea furniture with nary an Allen Key in sight. tephen Collis tephen Collis _________________________ Stephen Collis is a poet, activist, editor and professor. Stephen Collis is a poet, activist, editor and professor. His many books of poetry include The Commons (Talon Books 2008; second edition 2014), On the Material (Talon Books 2010—awarded the BC Book Prize for Poetry), To the Barricades (Talon Books 2013), and (with Jordan Scott) DECOMP (Coach House 2013). He has also written two books of literary criticism, a book of essays on the Occupy Movement, Dispatches from the Occupation (Talon Books 2012), and a novel, The Red Album (BookThug 2013). In 2014, while involved in anti-pipeline activism, he was sued for $5.6 million by US energy giant Kinder Morgan, whose lawyers read his poetry in court as “evidence.” He lives near Vancouver and teaches at Simon Fraser University.