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Hannah Brooks-Motl


I am sure that the sentence rots when no one is in it

That there remain mysterious sounds uninvestigated
Not worth the effort, the trouble

That it goes on unanalyzed

I am sure that voice is bad
That Stephanie, that Ruth, that Erin

That in the dark there is no voice
And my father is not a pastor

Or without wanting to get into it one got in
The simple answer is kindly

I am sure that weather determines
That the hoax inside the box remains unclarifiable
And the intermittent voice proves that love can't be god

That god can't direct the gold in the yard
Opening then closing the fence
That the fence persists, and the screens lighting up

We go on talking the same way

Far-off banging, some motors, the neighbors —

That this bag of dicks speckles the floor
That it takes one hour to heat your burrito

That the corner gets weirder in spring and that
The woman go on dancing they are so middle aged

The middle, the platform, the lung


Everything resounds in this wonderful trend
Every chemical substance upborne into my lungs
Each particular copy of war

Woke up dreaming of language, in texts
Of theory
Read a website

Do locomotive appeals in personal national crises
      — these keys —
Explain me, individually

Does the unreadable symphony
Of the routine

I run my hand along its thigh

I go adroit within its canopy
Trying to find my Grecian state
My love of perfected repose
In the bodega's debris

Sleep, to the stars, rocks, mountains, and jobs
To the student interpreter of rare, extravagant shit
To the episode, the tripod, the priest —

This one's a bold stroke in blunt language
This doodle, an old reformer

This perfectly nat-u-ral text
I am sending
Bout this ivy
Hogging brick

Poems coming up
The lives

And of their concealment
I'll paraphrase:

I like to walk in the sun
He hacked

I like to pass
The clothes drop dumpster

I like to kneel
Before the waterfall


Nothing radical about that technology
Nobody touches this era

Could u find a home
Know my brother

Who has a mind too
Has a portion

Historical Dance

Visualize the curvature of your own spine —
hubba hubba

What's a solar plexus when my hair is dirty?

The marble was left out so her nipples are gone
The fragments of luxury vessels

Hannah Brooks-Motl is the author of the chapbook The Montaigne Result (Song Cave, 2013) and the full-length collections The New Years (Rescue Press, 2014) and M (Song Cave, 2015). She is the poetry editor of Chicago Review and lives in Chicago and western Massachusetts.