the shortest distance along a curve




& every click's

a step away, a slip away, a shaved-off chip away

from what

was there before. The world & its every machination

is a process

of reduction. Every page I read is one page less

left in the book

one fewer moment remaining

in the sermon, collection of whatever

& that sudden, unprompted ringing in your ears

a frequency

alienspeak, maybe, light from space perhaps

cell phone dissolving cartilage that you'll never feel,

you'll never hear again. Maybe it's okay, Kenneth.

Even though you didn't make

my reading in Ann Arbor,

my voice go up a notch, my heart

flatline. Each door

in your advent calendar

one more surprise you can't get back,

each broken rule, taboo

a step toward the end of sense, sensation,


of the blood. So if everything mounts toward some final sum

every click

is one click closer, a dimmed

shim emanation,

availability's erosion. It is a modern crisis & complaint,

too much choice

& failing time, our lives spent whiningly in supermarkets,


sudokus in reverse, an unIcarian rising up

toward bliss of maximum

attention, intuition, imagination, prestidigitation,

R. Kelly's "Ignition (remix)"

hardly hot & fresh out the kitchen, & now even the kitchen

is beginning to disappear.

Let me say this now: it's impossible not to


& hemmorhage muchness

& the vast space of America & American

conceptions of outer space as seen in 3 dimensions

on your growing screen of choice

your choice of screens, your preferred streakers, tweakers,

hackers, phone phreakers,

David Bakers and those wronged by David Bakers

late nights out at the breakers

surrounded by what looks a lot like nothingness

but is actually the Compleat

History of Lights, like new, first edition, readable only

at night, in water, forever.

These operations, if repeated often enough,

become pleasure

or what passes for it (pressure,

sense's attenuation; as you know

perception's weak, and we are mostly weaker),

not infinity but its opposite.

Until our bones are resounding

dial tones of telephones,

our lights finally gone, wind-blown candles,

like Elton John, like G. I. Jane,

like karaoke

extinguished or at least permanently

on the lam or on the wane,

our lives are leaks, unsalvagable sieves.

Wanly, I say, see you next week

if either of us lives.