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According to the Cats, & All That Jazz

gumbo crawdad applejack
smack around the weeping willow
melting frost an inuit swamp
whale of a tale of windsoaked trees
breezing smack of jubilee fries
been bubbling in the caul a long time

incensed suzanne dropping deftly
an ointment fly cast leftly

jumbo frozen crocodile
spicing up the masques of the nile
all the while whittling away
cracked coal of a goal to sway
some simple cajun tundra lost
all over the world then back to frost

increased suzanne waving lengthwise
a craving for the breaking coastline

bumbling breezing bubbled soup
unleashed outside the hidebound hut
a little red crest of cracks
unbound around the frozen suzanne

Over Saturn

you split your lip
on my jagged heart
& spilled blood all down the front of my shirt
& the rain keeps pouring down
& the rain keeps pouring down
still it won’t wash away my pain

but we’re
drunk on moonlight, swooning on starlight
with orchids in our hair
& i’ll kiss your bloody lip

there’s nothing left but the rain & the moon & the stars

Beyond the Speed of Reading

I’m not usually into dark, gritty, street-level superheroes, but Marvel’s Daredevil series on Netflix is jaw-droppingly excellent and has knocked my socks off. Author/evil mastermind Victoria Schwab tweeted a link to this list of recommended reading for fans of the show (including Schwab’s terrific Vicious), and that list got me thinking of other recommended reading based on other superhero stories…

The new Flash TV series is my favorite new show of the season and is probably my favorite superhero TV series of all-time. The main character revels in his superpowers and uses them rescue people and fight crime with enthusiasm and dedication, and the show embraces a lot of my favorite superhero tropes, like cool/goofy superhero and supervillain names and weird science. It hits a lot of the same pleasure buttons that Doctor Who and the comics of Jack Kirby and Grant Morrison do. I would love to see a list of recommended reading for fans like me who love the hell out of this stuff, stories with huge amounts of imagination, weird and mad science (or weird and mad magic, or a mix of science and magic), time travel, multiple universes, epic conflicts, and heroes who are enthusiastic and kind-hearted and earnest. But I don’t think I could make that list myself.

So I’m putting out a request for reading suggestions of novels (or story collections or, hell, even non-fiction books) that hit this high-level imagination and heroism and crazy science/magic Venn diagram that punches my Gee Whiz buttons.


Got suggestions? Leave a comment here!

Chances Are…

when your insides turn to thunder
& all you can think about
is taking tiger mountain by strategy
with no strategy at all

it’s time to remember you’re a drop in the ocean
& even if you were ordained
the pope of all cities
the power would never be enough

never be enough
never enough
never enough

flow like a stream
drift like a breeze
move through the world like a wraith
& don’t fight what you cannot fight


before we begin, before we recite our lines
let us learn to appreciate the commodification
of our dreams, the phantom fires deep in our hearts
burning & yearning for coins to be spent

nevermind the discotheque, the spectacle of lights
the glitter & glamour & shimmer & glimmer
of our dreams, the phantom fires deep in our hearts
burning & churning for cash to be spent

while we sit in our seats or stand on our stage
let us sing an ode to the commercialization
of our exquisite corpses, dancing through the graveyard
burning & yearning for coins to be spent

& now we start with our songs in our throats
ignoring everything outside our cubes of comfort
turning out our dreams, our hearts, our bodies
burning & churning for cash to be spent

so let the carnival begin!

Dropping the Drip-Drop Dive

dive breath poor cotton
all food dive breath gaze escape
before clubs stunt the heap in splits
a treat fire bread worsted the seaside

seaside dole backs

backs doorbell constable collide gaze
buttoned draw skin weeds in on skin
axe wings gold thrift boar
before fire wrinkled fevered rented dead
with cotton scope clubs

clubs spy sunburn

sunburn crash pretty chime colour demon models in gum
fired some bomb boon toasted meat pop of run
spy a spy in run on crisp toasted the fire
before single in bars a gum-fired fire
wrinkled meat bird forking match sniffing heap
fire wrinkled rented gun hall speed name
up escape before a game dive breath

take street of slacks dressed dive breath
wool wire luck the clipped thrift scope name
stock axe into food-spooned models
stunt crisp toasted match sniffing this sunburn
single pretty pitch time escape
bear before slacks dressed gaze buttoned stone time
bread of pitch rule skin rings cotton jets this spy
street thyme in weeds in worsted rule boon
toasted up toast strawberry my mercurial speed
fair time escape pooled in time

escape double constable collide name

boar before name seaside shells bars donor