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Docenture: fog

Landscape is undercelebrated. Along coast
or up mountainside in pilgrimage this color
fondles the earth, wet in the dark morning. The trust
felt at the onset of travel becomes dolor.
What have you left? Behind and in front of you, mist
threads direction with regret. You cannot follow
so wander, small. So slow to traverse our greatest
hall. Immense, opaque. There, you find a lone sculpture
we sought out for occlusion. A glass box with nest
inside. An unhatched egg sits in tufts of eider-
down having forgotten to become. Your own lost-
ness occurred prior to any labyrinth. Scour
memory for a shred of bird and own your curse–
fog lifts. A field of wings, torn from flight. The hand yours.

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Docenture: pale

Not there quite. If ghost, then fetal.
If blue, reflected on steel sea. If alive

then sickly. If sickly, thin and. If a thought
the itch of one. Or mint then, if knot. If

a song, minor. If poem, dirtpoor couplets
courting exile in too-thin coats. If we, then

we spectral, and irrelevant by act two.
We lie. Still. All pale is is performance.

To reach wan, poke a digit through.
Since Duchamps’ Since, pale is

a gash untranslated thru pixel. If given
to that vice, keep coding. Growing cold.

Crossing over, note a night of northern color
closing in. Not watery, quiet. A starry violin.

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Docenture: midnight

The brothered concern hired to paint the walls vanished
against the walls. Security come to recover the lost
backed out cowed and impoverished as whimsy. A dead
mouse fell from an airduct and another fell alive, wanting
to scurry, and died. Several days we spent without heat
or air-conditioning inside actual weather. A soldier
from a desperate century arrived in the front hall asking
to see our injection sites. We led him into the blue
and showed him the blue and from the blue delivered him.
He was dismantled, unsteadied, pitched past all pitch.
Gunman had become bird or fish. It was a puzzle to pluck
molecular scale from his plumed uniform. We sent him off
but not to Morocco or Muncie. Morning was all. I asked you
and you asked me how we’d happened ourselves to find
guidework. We are neither sherpa nor pirate. Our maps
show both up and down dragons – opensky and vastwater
between us. If this color were traded publicly, others too
were unfathomed. We closed our doors against onslaught
of the dyswynked and the blynkless to enter the nada.

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Docenture: pink

So, early in the process we outlawed roses.
Also panties. We wanted the unexpected and settled
for a playful pain. We went with lawn ornaments
and antacid. We touched upon dawn, but oh so
briefly, avoiding nipples. You think we are
blushing, but we have made up our faces
from whole cloth. Damask. Completely fabricated.
As we continue you will think us coy and perhaps
interested and this will be part of what we mean
to debunk. Strangely, experts in the field are mediums–
rarely twelve. Phone cases and ballet slippers
have been brought in from the current era, but realize
these come in all shades, and before that, were customized.
There is a section on Chanel suits that presage
death, an alcove strewn with babies’ clothes, pre WWII.

It still shimmers and feels like powder to the eye.
It still makes you cry at its estrangement from red.
It still punctures, too brash, too azalea or neon.
It’s always been too, this pink, and it will not valentine again.

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Dear Doctors Docent

Dear Doctors Docent,

Why would you be plural?

Nearly Everything


Dear Nearly,

If you are truly all the things, then you are one
with every. We are not, we are plural because
we is. Reasons include The Shining, bees
and nuance: we are not legion but we are field. Field
because we have done thunk. We have done
with all the singularities. Done with the buzz.
Done with black and worm and arse holes. Done.
On a darker note, also we are plural because
of the authorial tone it confers and fashion-wise
because it suits us. Have you ever gazed
upon an arthropod in a tuxedo? We were stunned.
Still, we prefer Odilon Redon’s crying spider to his
smiling one, and also we favor the smiling. Un-
like Cyclops, we see how we see fit. We does.

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Docenture: brown

Dumb mud. Silt. Clay masks to mouth
candor, release pore. When peaches go so soft
they melt. Shit is warm because of its origin
within our cavities.

Our gallery, shaped as if intestinal
is merely underground. Tasked with
diagnosis, we’d guess dread

of the convoluted. Meandros. Rope
saves, strangles, lowers gently the gone body
from the gallows. Of four humors, none
is umber, a color come to for cure.

Hue of recovery: of earth and rivers
amending the earth, allowing passage
maybe art to transpire.

Our pieces traffic in human
breath. Seeds delivered on air.
They row thru brown—ale
and bread, root and song.

Those who wander our halls in tendril
we advise: Thatch deeply. Be woven
of dead matters. Decay
in thick layers.

It is an old way of home
—to conduct the rain.

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Docenture: Orange

Citrus everywhere: tequila republic, terracotta barcrawl.

The tropics migrating north. Our museum sports
stilettos to stumble with. Climate as deepthroat, as
decoronation. Off with the headmistress’s papers.
Cage her. We’re calling the installation The Viral
Unqueen–it will make wet the wistful, quench
sovereigns. Coined words on wall plaques are
*not* fiscal appropriation. All the pert umbrellas
have been banished from all the drinks as monsoons
we now realize are not metaphors for torpor. They
are torpor itself. Art is only happy to be gazed upon
once it recognizes its pornography as ontological. How
we rub off the royalty in a finale we call the Antoinette.
Our art has agency. We pay Janet and her underlings
top dollar to scour the casting couch for what comes
close: loose change, tang, door hinge. We ache to paint
a sun going down on the wall but setting is a western
deconstruction. All those silly forks to learn. Dialectic.
Oyster. Pitch. If you look to the skies where night rises
like oil in a derrick, and wait—always a slick dauphin.
A viciously-centered orb surfacing, a dimpled boy
dubbed and glowing and flagrant with history.

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Be Docent to Each Other

We, at [email protected], are here to make sure you know
how to speak, who to f***, where to go & when to
—go now MarvinK, go crazy, but don’t say crazy, think
good thoughts, do good things, except don’t do anything  
not yours to do, there’s a page on the internet you can
check, there’re seven thousand contraindicating listicles, or
skip it since we know you haven’t performed your eight
rounds of selfcare since breakfast, the most important meal
to skip while intermittently fasting, &you need to, who told
you btw you were good enough to do good things? your
mother? you should check your self, your breasts, your men-
opausal or pandemic belly, your checkbook (no, get rid of
the checkbook/the police state/those shoes you can’t pull
off now that bending at the waist makes the back thing
happen), give us a follow, we know you’re not sure how to
check our claims, suffice it to say it’s a tone thing we’ve
mastered (don’t say master), once we cashed in our tapped ED
for sparkling Dante, an all-the-way downgrade so shall-we-say
applicable? We may be Nobody but Nobody’s clutch, our purse
gone public. Nobody is not an artist. Nobody not an expert.
Nobody curates experience. There is no influencer as bog.
More froggy. You’ll listen to Nobody. You always have.

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Docenture: green

In the green room, we have grass.
Grass is rhizomal but we won’t bore you
with that tetch and twaddle. Those men hated
something much like themselves, something
terribly equivalent. This room is a room
we are proud of. We’ve acquired un-nasty goats
to graze and sing. You might suppose that means
a mountain, but we do not believe one part
of the earth should lord itself over the valleys.
#Riverism. Our equalities hinge on all artifacts
in the green room functioning as both art
and fact: stand-ins. I am your docent and I
will be standing in for Whitman who has been
canceled repeatedly. When any object can be
imagined as a different object, you have virtual
reality without electricity, without scarcity, without
any city at all. You can deign to be more bucolic.
Even interior. Cry. The vibe of this room verges
on simplicity, really a small town on the edge
of an ocean, the one remaining rainforest, alp.
We want all our visitors to lie down in fields
unpoppied, tripping volitionally on their own
oxygen intake, freed lungs swinging invisibly
above them like green-assed balloons.  

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I am mystery / you are your story / I am your starry
night and you my shining / you shine hard & I’m such
a hard act, pill to follow, swallow / you leave

at intermission / throat, dry

I am inhospitable / you are in a hospital / pleased I am
as punch / nursing a domestic dispute / say judge maybe say
judy judy judy / I’m an open bloom, book / you will likely

skim, pluck

love me not / I am Off with his head! / suddenly you are
a shorter horseman / I’ll tumble for you turn me round
round baby right round / I am nearly retired / but you are

tired for the first time

I may be a misanthrope but / you cantaloupe, not without
your melonhead / I am not the droid / you are looking
good / jesus please just stop / I am ajar, adrift, a mess

you’re in a pickle / bottle-fogged

we may be quantumly entangled / but I am not remotely
interested / I am woman composed / you vomit manifesto
and think “same” / I am like zeroes, zeroes, zeroes while

you are roses all. the way. down.

I am the driven snow / and you, you are the snow’s
chauffeur / what I yam is what I yam though you’re so
veined / cabbage, baggage / I try to carry on and wonder

if you are also crow, scared / and scene

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Maples opening red like it’s

fall all over. I’m against

reversals because suffrage.

The sky is streaky. Grubby

hands daubing charcoal. Children

though, can’t reach beyond

a kite. When’s the last time anyone’s

seen a kite sans ocean? April has

forsythia but hasn’t figured how

to bring this year’s goods. As

if. What could be good now?

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I get the feeling of a terribly distant star -Kobo Abe

The black that is green, sky that is
summer, the woman without
a body, grown inverse.

To open a book because
there is no one, driven, to else
into rain.

If the invisible animal who climbs
onto your sternum is not
communicative, assume cat. They steal into cribs
for breathing, though you are old as snow.

Your own children have fed
and housed strays and you cannot any
longer protect them from these blatant acts
of kindness. You used to

You told the oldest he need not
save every single one. He left you.

They are all leaving, wind, you signed
the slips. Mars—
though it isn’t vitally possible.

Each day you try to etch again
the self, synapses made circuit.

The process is subtractive, mother-
boarding. A transhumanism. Loss
the goal, to build ships
fast enough they are carried away.

A crypt of currency. How often did you after bed
glide out to the farthest edge of the yard? The dogwood
hanging over gray fence like a caught fox.

You thought they couldn’t feel that?

On tiptoe they watched your habit of
argument with the night, heavy eyes fighting
to stay open, to lift, then trace star-forms beyond

the deep sill. Contented stars
you’d told them. What lies
you shined.