203.1: Carleen Tibbetts:: from DATACLYSM.jpg 203

This morning my coffee shop crawls with toddlers, hipster toddlers—they all have mullets. While putting cream into my coffee, hung over, I part the two in front of me to exit. One trips over my feet and face plants right into the polished concrete floors. Seconds pass, nothing, and then blood from his nose, he wails. I apologize to his mother but she reassures me I have nothing to do with his fall. In the car, Joshua texts, ‘Hey was I being an asshole last night?’ No, I respond, not at all. “I have this vague feeling that I was,” he says. Today is already heavy with the guilt and terror of living. This week, we present four from Carleen Tibbett’s Dataclysm. The suffix -clysm: break, broken, crush, bend, destroy. Dataclysm—I think, then, overwhelmed by data, broken and crushed by this anxiety of living, the endless information. Tibbett’s work is so approachable yet resists easy summary, a tension created by availability and that the windows of the shop are painted black and we can’t look in. Each poem ends with a .jpg file extension, and each poem is a tiny, perfect image-making machine. Experiments where in the “infinite types of darkness” words are made, “spectralnestled / in the somewhen.” We sometimes know it’s not our fault, that we did nothing wrong, but we can’t resist the need to apologize. Tibbetts' poems remind me of my need to be absolved. Nik De Dominic


you indecipherable accident of mirage
doing your dumb gazework
your whoosh of revision
the spirit predates the self
a vitriol unfolds amongst the brackets
its a matter of hate really
a rotting kinetics
oftscaled in the worst ways


to body such investiture
the V of her
faux virgin/foe virgin
rotted harbinger
unaccustomed to the wet
the redundancy of
supreme texture
the corpsed morphosphere
of a necrotic moon
elided from sky


previous experiments yielded
a certain breed of happiness
too much for some
fuck the haters
the air flaunts the naked word
the word stripped
bare of its bachelors
finger the empty
the slick contrivance
some people aways step
in the same river twice


there are infinite types of darkness
and infinite types of light
like the lasting of loud
shoes in a museum
or an “i like myself” kind of pocket
one does not have a literal translation
for the detritus garments of
muted hearts spectralnestled
in the somewhen