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The government’s been thinking

about us again plum tree dripping blood and stones

what do you think

thoughts running in long lines

intersected by other lines

and so in any given zone

note the sky with the sky in its mouth—

blue pig, blue apple

thinking that you step

on a carpenter’s nail dizzyingly

achieve the Jesus affect

[I’ll have you now x I’ll have you know]

[North by Northwest x South by Southwest]

[to dust x to dust ]

locally to add is to take away

and finding Xanax in the water was then as unsurprising

as everything on Xanax, remote

as other people’s problems

the largest mattress commercially available

being the Vitruvian

squares falling over squares

reticle unto reticle

exhale—the Rabbit escapes

this instrument for registering

[pleasure, it has been said]

fine changes in the wind as fire

density of affective particles I’m being hunted by a liquid


NOAH WARREN is the author of The Complete Stories (Copper Canyon, 2021) and The Destroyer in the Glass (Yale, 2016). His poems appear in The Paris Review, POETRY, The American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, and elsewhere, and his honors include the Yale Series of Younger Poets and a Wallace Stegner fellowship. He is a PhD candidate in English at UC Berkeley, where he coordinates the Lunch Poems reading series.


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