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Two Poems, by Joe Milazzo



We are one extraordinarily
confessing animal.

The mere act;
said bonds
with unsaid.
Translation rarely
picks up the phone.

To scale rapport,
distort it. To pour
out the low friction
you journal on
your own schedule,
know that skeptics will
compete to duplicate the free
version of your distress.

Logistical symptoms get
too depressed to probe
the root causes
of a couch.

In moments
of panic, insurance
warns us not
to shortchange
willing illusions.

The good news is
a very self-defeating kind
of trying. The bad
news teaches us
we are a somewhat
theoretical flesh-and-blood
sandwich that, although
tedious, is going
to be okay.


Any French Philosophy Post-Rousseau Is Essentially a Magazine

But I live for the inanities.

What others are bingeing.

Motivational messages
published on foodstuff
desktops: embossing
the bottoms of pie tins;
under the plastic
sheathe keeping
my organic meat sticks
pouched; in the fold of
a sachet de tisane’s tag;
apocalypses and beatitudes taken
out of context and absolutely
for individual sale.

Rounded corners are for users
of a deprecated typology.

I have more of an affinity
for seeing my aspirations
strained through right angles.

I prefer that the polygonal lasso
just graze me. Like a massage.

Feathery. Webbed.
I didn’t order the latex
finger cots. I ordered
the silicone-free
rubber thimbles.

I won’t risk error in
looking up too much
in the dictionary.

Picture a dictionary
with every last one of
the yellow pages’ VIP
treatments. Call up
a word and simply ask
it what it means.

My all-in-one 1-800
number plays an ambient mix
of anti-aliased dial tones.

My thesaurus returns
no results. No better
way to say
“second skin” than “me.”


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