R O A D K I L L   A F T E R B I R T H   R I D D L E

untitled (skull), 1981
acrylic oil paintstick spray paint &paper collage on wood




q) the desert doesn't call herself old, she calls herself dead

                      a) it: rows&rows of teeth pakd into skull drawnin thick oilstick/ debris of a
                      city stuffd into baremouth the augur & BONES/ bones built from acrylic &
                      improvised brushstroke a clavicle &all its views depicting the premonition of Moon
                      King—the famous throne the thorncrown the Art of a Discarded Apt Door


q) & what a surprise to find out, after all these years: rib cages that used to be swimming pools.
                 

                      a) wantstolive:soextendstheirentirebodyintothegestureanarrowbetweentheribs

q) getting this done versus what she wanted to do…

                     a) as      in      we      always      forget      this      can      happen—

q) a wordless argument would be a relief: to be seen, for love, to be adored, for fame, to be wanted…

                     a) they: the Ruffians All Kings with thorncrowns or
                         haloes or arms outstretched into the golden wood of tall night/
                         crowded skeletal systems CRWND in oilstick &whiteout


q) like an autopsy or a ballerina fantasy or a prayer without any saints—

                     a) wants:      that      frenetic      slum      elegance—

q) unpeopled as it rips away from the horizon: the childless fiction (forgiving himself for what he didn’t do
                   

                    a) he: aquí está social abrasion in the form of paintlayers huedrip/ oil (       ) rough violets

q) (wolf moon carcass cannibal sunbleached birthday hat tricycles like gravestones & the bloodless yellow
heart of heaven)

                    a) here: we are (pre)serving the seeds of some( )
                    Authentic/ partWolf partLobo partCPRKR & then the Art stops
                    breathing as in overdose


q) he forgets his shape, he seduces an orange, he wipes the woody guthrie lyrics from his mouth he drags his
belly across the steaming sand all day he doesnt answer prayers but he never turns them

                    a) in     other     words:     an     unrehearsed     calabash  —  as     in
                    some white men /                                                 are black men/ too/



q) (or maybe that’s backwards) (or maybe that’s the leaves of the world turning towards the light until all that’s
left is human

                   a) we:           an           anatomical        study           of          the
                   astronomy    of    altered    states::: satellite   lost   meteor   found


q) the desert stands up, says her goodbyes to the lion, to horses thin as girls, & the girls who ride them, thin as
wishes that will not come true—

​​H E R M E N E U T I C   C H A O S   J O U R N A L

E M I L Y   C A R R   &   L A U R A   W I N B E R R Y

Emily Carr directs the Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing at OSU-Cascades, where it is their mandate to wish higher, fail faster, and be wilder. Emily writes murder mysteries that turn into love poems that are sometimes (by her McSweeney's editors, for example) called divorce poems. Regardless, she is most interested in experiment, with heart.











Laura Winberry is an OSU-Cascades MFA alumni, poet, and professional cyclocross racer. She’s been picking her outfit out on the way to the party since 1984. Together they are Billy, & The Kid. Their mission: to get messy, and make some mistakes. Performances of our collaborative outlaw science fiction sonnet sequence have been held, by invitation, at TEDX Bend and Caldera Arts and generally involve plastic flowers, glo-in-the-dark gummy worms, potting soil, and a healthy dose of serious whimsy.