Jeff Crouch

                 alarmed by my navy-blue suit and long sleeves—

                 summer in Texas—

                I had taken off my shades—,
                The mother stares at me briefly and starts running.
                She knows I want her children.

               Diseases of Canaries


               "Not to believe what you see."


              Always believing something—


             gaunt Moses
            reaches up
            from Egypt

           Poe, Poe, Poe
          with a rented video camera
          filming the candle

         the window opens

        mansion de melancholia


      —an electric hammering hum
     blinded, bewildered, uncertain.


   its primal bed

  Prior to the 2003 NFL Draft, News on Joel Buchsbaum Surfaced

 a blur protrudes, the city erased but its map extant

By abandoning a part of our psychic capacity as unexplainable through purposive ideas we ignore the realms of determinism in our mental life. Here, as in still other spheres, determinism reaches farther than we suppose. In the year 1900 I read an essay published in the _Zeit_ written by the literary historian R. M. Meyer, in which he maintains, and illustrates by examples, that it is impossible to compose nonsense intentionally and arbitrarily, For some time I have been aware that it is impossible to think of a number, or even of a name, of one's own free will. If one investigates this seeming [p. 279] voluntary formation, let us say, of a number of many digits uttered in unrestrained mirth, it always proves to be so strictly determined that the determination seems impossible. I will now briefly discuss an example of an "arbitrarily chosen" first name, and then exhaustively analyse an analogous example of: a "thoughtlessly uttered" number.


a hot cup

computer readout

Vienna next

Gerhard Richter, gasoline

Lysol , Right Guard

the team

"Who is this man
in his Sunday best,
planting flags for waving
on the Fourth?"

she bends cello
Man Ray

atrocity, city, Schaedel

Our water hose did not make us fireman.

sipping surrender
Helmut Newton enters

in a wheelchair
black rubber

a hot cup

What came to Feynman by "common sense" were often brilliant twists that perfectly captured the essence of his point. Once, during a public lecture, he was trying to explain why one must not verify an idea using the same data that suggested the idea in the first place. Seeming to wander off the subject, Feynman began talking about license plates. "You know, the most amazing thing happened to me tonight. I was coming here, on the way to the lecture, and I came in through the parking lot. And you won't believe what happened. I saw a car with the license plate ARW 357. Can you imagine? Of all the millions of license plates in the state, what was the chance that I would see that particular one tonight? Amazing!" A point that even many scientists fail to grasp was made clear through Feynman's remarkable "common sense."

An article by Juliet Macur in The Dallas Morning News: April 20, 2003.
An article by Gene Collier at post-gazette.com on January 17, 2003—
An article, written in 1998, by John McClain at houston-chronicle.com, reposted?—

DOD: December 29, 2002.

all phone calls, notes, mail, and footage.

a keepsake in the trash, executed immediately
touching Vonnegut, the torch—


I scrambled to find the repellent. Did you turn off the ____________________ yet?
Raise your hand. Did you have a question? When, then, yell—holler! By all means,
Wake up! The windshield coated in slime. The risk of infection. The cake stripped of
Its icing. You ate all the icing. Amidst the buzz, the drone, the ever increasing hum,
You said, "She was sitting in the corner, talking cake, showing pie." What flavor was
That pie? And what did you mean, really? Ski mask and jogging shorts? The mosquito,
The mosquito. You said the word as though it were the name of a tribe: Mosquito. Hungry, possessed of malice, stingers at the ready, engorged on blood. The risk of Infection high. Where did you find all of these sci-fi B-movies? Nature on steroids. I
Tried to comprehend. You said, "There's a gun in the glove compartment," and then
You asked me if I was going to join the club. I had always wanted to go camping.

of gods, knowledge, among the starving, sterben
distribute funding, contribute this trace, a fact, to die for science—
dignity—ashes, firebombing, politic

last I looked, sitting with a shotgun on the front porch


no Burt Lancaster with an Academy Award.

every shadow on the wall ungentle—

The Minotaur follows Icarus.

The sprinkler on, her little girl runs back and forth, and back and forth, across the lawn,
Splashing in the spray, across the lawn, her hair damp, her clothes moist. Sunning,
The little girl sits and breathes and kicks the run-off and jumps up again to play.

All societies are founded on collective crimes which are subsequently denied by their many beneficiaries. Complicity and denial are constitutive of morality: concern for utility is merely there to suture the wound. This was true for Christianity, which recognized evil generically, in light of redemption, but refused to acknowledge its presence at the heart of the religious experience. "There's in Christianity," Bataille argued, "a will not to be guilty, a will to locate guilt outside of the church, to find a transcendence to man in relation to guilt." This accounted for the Church's inability to deal with evil, except as a threat coming from the outside. Doing the Church justice "in total hostility," Bataille assumed guilt and anguish as his own, daring Christianity to experience Christ's sacrifice as the equivocal expression of evil. By the same token Bataille found himself occupying the very symbolic space the church had assigned to the Jews. Fear and anguish were Bataille's stigmata -- God's festering wounds.

"How are you, ma'am? Your daughter's precious. Would you be interested … ?"
Interrupting, the mother screams, "What the hell are you doing?"

My children!

The little girls says, "Woo, woo, woo."

a Geigeresque instrument

dark church—
in coronation—at last, lapse.

"Here's my card, Ma'am."

look what I found
not the dead,
but their flowers you should have
brought them down
in my red wagon
Mother didn't want them
return them to the dead
she said
these are you flowers,

I'd send her flowers too
flowers for Mom

"But I don't want your card."

to Vicki Vale—
"You give it all such a glow."

Never elected, nevertheless—

A plaque in the souvenir shop
Across from Yarmouth

Each crash site, date, and death

Orphaned, by crime—

The state where death returns an inexact doom
—this "sacrifice."

raped too many times
to forget them

lucid Cinderella
at a local charity mission

Good-bye hello Europe,


chemical that feeds and kills us.

For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment; And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool. Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts? (James 2: 2-4, 6.)

It's always the girl with the big tits with you.


sinew for dinner
no one's

piano played

hair loss.

You despise the poor.

Lacking endowment.


rearview to the uprooted

cloud seeming shelter


a visceral reaction at Chuck E. Cheese—

pimp these mothers.

I called at 10 PM on the dot—
You told me you would help me with my math homework—
But I got your cell phone's
"Leave a Message" response.

then there's this

The Henry Ford division of labor
"Good fences make good neighbors"—
Discrete units, value sum

A way to pacify the native population
A way to fix the slave situation
A way to make the world safe for some

Across the board, make it hum—
Cambodia, a playground in Dresden—
But the usual question, "Who won?"


No beard, no asphalt tan
No grit of being unbathed for days on end

I don't smell anything but cologne
Whatever he's recovering from

He's the owner according to my mom

Disfigured by disease

These figures are something

The medicine
The charges

His brand's High IQ

Extra-wide smile
Words in the toilet

Leather clock
Leather what?

The funeral parlor furniture

I wondered what stunk

Business is business

I'm serious
He got this furniture from a dentist office

This place used to be a funeral home

The porn stars make their entrance

Those aren't porn stars, that's my sister—idiot



As usual, you're making me nervous

Dialogue from a soap opera addict
The dump truck in my gut
Hurricane in the alley

You raided your parent's liquor cabinet?

Don't dump your pants

That's enough

I had already punched the clock
At Joe's Hamburger and Chicken Shop.
You might imagine I was hot
When you failed to show up.

What are you, crazy?

Where's a business card when you need it?

my lack of mathematical skill
was much improved
by watching your fingers

You're criminal.

Worse, I f-ed your wife.

You showed Larry how to connect the dots,
And I drew a circle with my compass.
"Cut it out," and cut it out I did—

"Please Mister, please."

That rich men oppress you—who calls you to judgment?

Honey, what you need to be—

no endoskeleton
giggle floppy baby
in her pineapple
wind and a curtain

Nothing a little surgery can't fix.


Anything to make you jealous.

The mother pokes a finger in my face and says, "I've heard your lies.
You'll tell me you're a real estate agent and ask me if I'm interested in buying or selling.
I had a husband once, and you killed him."

Her at home saving whale
No biscuit dough talent show
Sea with its sunken treasure
Coffin in our kitchen

… the race of birds was created out of innocent light-minded men, who, although their minds were directed toward heaven, imagined, in their simplicity, that the clearest demonstration of the things above was to be obtained by sight;

Jeff Crouch is a writer in Grand Prairie, Texas. Google him.