Steve Timm

Steve Timm performs music, poetry, and eclectic outrage with the highly recommended ensemble Dyna-Music. He frequently reads, and occasionally emcees, at Cheap At Any Price, often Under The Influence. He teaches English as a Second Language at the University of Wisconsin.



Lives of the Legislators

          Shelley wasn't it said didn't he that poets are the true legislators of the world. Something like. I don't feel like tidy citation today. And didn't Plato say he'd keep poets out of his Republic they'd fuck it up with their adherence to the truth wasn't it?



Automaton or baton
these are the lives
of the legislators.

Can't say why.

The ell in each life is small
the ell of every legislator is small.
Pure reach
of the number of the self and vice versa.

what it's like
to wonder if we should say vee-say vear-sah
to say nothing of who said it
first, thirsting.

Tallish sound the tongue goes round. Even
in Arabic the sign rises away
from. Lam they call it. That
their name for God
takes 2's
scarier than the abyss
of the first mouth that opened around
ours, bleating.


One wonders mopping piss and jello
and the butterknife in the backpocket
for what wouldn't mop and songs
about astral planes and what could
that be. Remembers
untouchable, enactment for a night
of jumping from the barstool. Sweet
youth it is sweeter
if the audience has it.


On the chamber floor it was like
they're singing a axilla. Axilla's
armpit, I don't know what a
could be but it's not "a". Skids
rhymes with kids, or rhyme. Youth
truth or in a
booth, mother other. Nation's matched
with not by conflagration, flatted ninth no
less, while adversity and diversity
make a splice of chain of growth or so.

Worries concern not concerns worry
and reduction with "a" disavails. Scratch
head (heads). Dive or soar–knotty
that kind (or kind of) singin.
Cackle like prattle pocket-
deep registers. Jolly bones of rhythm. A-
denoidal. Da noive. Dominant-toxic.


Cloze. The next with its
corner, the muffled sentence
that waits or doesn't to find
ear. What soul if soul is
or even could be could be filled with. Sent-
ence without words or with in it could be
any language. I cannot bear
to watch teens for long because
they keep filling the next space before it ap-
pears. Because they are scared.
Because I would which is don't see.


I imagine that you enter by the zendo's front door
I imagine that you leave through the back.
It is embarrassing to say a word like zendo
so that others hear it. Place
of what. To cut a definition in the air
to strike ear. To leave a message's
path catch
them up. I
imagine the green stripes you cross to get there
the wild heights you step into after. Heights
of grass whoever was assigned to having
not. Of
grass. Spine is a type of blade.


It appears I must explain myself
What are you doing
I am wracking
The first misunderstanding
It perhaps I choose began over started at the fair in the spookhouse where the tram one (I)
   and one's companions (forgotten you) and strangers rode in triggered jumpings-out-at-
The yellow ball in the corner
money's riding on
Is that all the money you've got
all you've got
Not at all like playing remember-the-alamo or is it

It begins see above when one seeks fright on the out
Where should fright should be
Begins with safety
The first inevitable error
Marvelous to know something and say so
Arbitrary existence is my motto
Never matter of luck
Softest skin I ever felt honest

To be misunderstood, trigger, ride, purple, first kiss or similar, drench 'cause water,
   mechanical spooks, drive, solve or solute, attention
Honor ancestors you have no memory of
Refusal to explain remains


"I would see." Ellipse
of the sun or the
son I'll never. Why I ne-
ver. –Espeak of the clear especks
that dance in vitreous.
                                   … As if
to inter clues induces. The world

in spades. Archæologists
or old men sweeping the rhizomes. How good it
is to say. How much
would it
take to split them open to let this all
this in. My
I imagine
god. How much would they take. Would I
take to them. Why
we could talk of


In his hilarious "Wasteland" Eliot
founds what must be since we're
still stuck in
it eternity. Christ! –to be dead at
whatever age one is.
–Oh: it's funny if you can see it, through it.

Jimmy Stewart and – what's her name in Vertigo that doesn't die?
Sees it through I won't say who.
Mercy is no woman or street act. Inter-
like fuck. Like
Hell. For-
      how it ends
(the movie and the poem, damn!) just
know the coolgranite love

© Steve Timm


     *   *   *   *   *   *


Mitch Mitchell

And if you were his
Is it enough
for you to stand beside
what angels & devils grow out of, what
is made of, what you
for. Can
that get you
to the getting
to know.

© Steve Timm