Clayton Eshleman Pollock Pouring

alligatorzine | zine

To cage you blizzard, to purify
your gizzard while disemboweling
the lizard in its bower. To make these millipedal
feelers mill, to pedal eels, white elvers,
or are they elves? If so, turn piranhas on them
to exacerbate any penetralia
which may have coagulated in my rage.

To age you in an instant aardvark so that no one
can identify a figure in my marble reserve,
for the figure is eaten by the ground and the ground
is poisoned by the figure. The hierarch,
Ducoed and lacquered, is pulled down. And all of them,
as fractal fragrance, are caged.

To dissemble thus deny any fulcrum in this annexed
dark. An ark? Din of anodyne shadow passengers
entering. An Aurignacian nostalgia
overcasts my spill. Do they still have the floor?
Or is image the sand of picture-trillion particles?
                                                     Palm here
pressed to canvas to indicate: NO WAY.
Or: all ways all at once. Window on
the shattered mace of authoritative majesty.
The crud we’ve lost is forever active as cadaver molt.

Dribble of cream zigzagging on skates:
O most thoughtless, most thoughtful century!
Bullet-riddled Clara Petacci! Iwo Jima!
Weave oh weave siphonophoric maze!

Blizzard, I lock you into drawn-down freefall
where the moldy straw
as if by Rumpelstiltskin is turned into aureate flares.

Riot of the dead weight in me seeking a monotheistic throne.

To convert umbilical restraint into julienned white tapeworms
whose cut ends arc through my pour.

Not my being, but being’s bender as it is bent through me.

What is Garcia Lorca doing here? And in a blood canoe,
staring across the lake at Munch’s melting tomb…

No god will disinfect the rock of my machine.

In the Cunt of the Celestial Crocodile I solarize as a Hadal sum.


This poem is based primarily on Pollock's 1949 #1 (in the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles).
Concerning the Aurignacians: it was during the Aurignacian period (33,000-24,000 B.P.) that Cro-Magnon people fully emerged. Varied and elaborate tools made of bone began to appear. What has traditionally been called "art" also took place: in the now French Dordogne, crude engravings on stone slabs, including vulvas, cupules, and schematic animals, and in the Ardeche, at least in the Chauvet cave, paintings of lions, rhinoceroses and mammoths, some done with the verve and precision of a Picasso. In these senses, one can propose that the Aurignacians have the floor—they are, in fact, as far as image-making goes, THE floor.

The poem will be published in Anticline, a new collection of poems, to be published in 2010 by Black Widow Press in Boston (www.blackwidowpress.com).

This material is © Clayton Eshleman

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