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Half of a Black Moon.

And two other poems.



Half of a Black Moon.

The moon is behind a cloud and sitting in the blackness of the yard and I

The moreceive the information that your mother is going to die, that you

feel you should stay

feel yolonger but there’s another eight hour

operation, that you need to get back to school. There isn’t much I can say to this :

operati“Stay with your mother, you’ll be sad when she’s gone.” And I

start planning for her death : I’ll send you a link to Marie Howe’s ‘What the Living Do.’

start planning for her death : I’ll send I’ll offer you condolences and camaraderie and

start planning for her dea then be slightly relieved when you lose phone service in Slovakia

start phaving returned to bury your mother’s body. Look, the best thing

start phaving returned to bury your mother’s bodis probably for you to come home.

And by ‘home’ I mean ‘school.’ Look, remember that night we sat in the kebab shop

And by for forty minutes just to be told they were out of kebab? What did I say to you

And by then, in that pitch

in that black of night? My teeth laughing, “This is really hard

in that black of night? but you’ll get through it. You have to keep moving

in that black of night? but you’ll get through it. You have to . It’s what the living do.”



Dear [Rachel].

Dear [Rachel],

I saw some things today: two mice (not cartoons) fucking, their hips colliding

like insects or lips today: two mice (no(shellfish market conflict is expected to peak in 2023).

My boss says : make sure and rinse the strawberries, to agitate them thoroughly

My boss says : (we don’t know how many dirty Mexican hands they’ve passed through).



The girl I’m snapchatting says : keep it cool

The girl I’m sn don’t drag this on

The girl I’m sn more than it has to. In the parking lot of a Verizon Wireless

I ask: have you ever known

a hand that knows no //

a hand that kn is void of crush or hold?   __ Lucy says

a hand that kn ‘derivative & harvest’

(no, this is not the girl I’m snapping)

and I think she’s right: of crush or hold think of Kansas, or the Friday my friend fell down

a hand that kn is void of crush& broke his head against the stairs, the Thursday I found out

he was dead. __ (Oh well) __ The moth inked into your chest has landed on my windshield,

she says: the coyotes in Boulder are howling, which I imagine is code for

she say“the magpies in London are leaving.”

Dear [Rachel], in London find me.


Footnotes on Suffering.


1she says: the coyotes in Boulder are howling, 5which I imagine is code 6

My boss says : make sure and rinse the straw3

she says: the coyotes i The moth inked into your chest has landed on my windshield, 9

3b he was dead. __ (Oh well) __ The moth inked into your chest ha 4

he was dead. __ (Oh well) __ 8

  1. I was a child then (a) and wondering if I’d ever be fixed, unable (b) to hit a baseball from as early on as tee-ball. Our best batter had an .863 slugging average at fourteen and here I was batting twelfth in the line-up for the fourth consecutive season (c)(d).
    1. (as I still am now).
    2. to conduct a relationship from 4,678 miles away.
    3. : & asking for something extremely obscure. If I told you it was for nothing but hunger, would you be happy?
    4. behind Steven fucking Heikkuri for crying out loud.
  1. Obscure (a) isn’t a word that I’d usually circle back to, but I’m going to do it. In a recherché sort of way, we all know exactly what ‘obscure’ means without having to define it. This is interesting as it suggests we know exactly how to define a thing ‘not expressed or easily understood.’ William Blake writes, “What is grand is necessarily obscure to weak men. That which can be made explicit to the idiot is not worth my care.” Consider this statement in conflation: a statement by William Wordsworth reads, “Suffering is permanent, obscure and dark, and shares the nature of infinity.” If we combine Blake’s belief in the obscure with Wordsworth’s view of suffering, one must deduce that those who are unable to define their sufferings are inherently weak.
    1. /əbˈskjʊə/
      1. for the sake of this text, best understood as ‘not clearly expressed or easily understood.’
      2. synonyms include: abstruse, recondite, arcane, esoteric, recherché.
  1. This is not to say that my ill-ability at baseball is in any way connected to ‘suffering’ as it exists in this Blake-Wordswordian conception. Rather it is a vehicle to discuss the idea that I, the speaker, am habitually poor at self-improvement.
  1. The night I stuck my cock in Charlotte (b), you were saying how you were finally beginning to trust me (a) living in a new country. We (c) had been talking a week before anything happened; having entirely innocent conversation. The only thing I can recall from our speaking is that she’s a Crystal Palace fan (d)(e).
    1. I remember this conversation verbatim and I am forever sorry for this.
    2. ‘Attention! Je ne suis qu’un homme!’
    3. Charlotte and I.
    4. an awful thing to be.
    5. Hi, Charlotte.
  1. We (a) had entered a demon dance; I the withdrawer, you the pursuer. Similar to when at an ATM, one withdraws in the pursuit of something else. Granted, I didn’t know what I was pursuing, or that I was pursuing. All I knew is that I was suffering and whatever vaccine you were in America, you were fading.
    1. you and I.
      1. the ‘you’ figure present in (4).
  1. The incredibly unfortunate part is that we (a) were ‘destined’ to hook up that night; before she entered our (b) room (c). Because I quite chauvinistically used the word ‘destined’ in the last line, I am beginning to wonder what readers might think about this (d). Our (a) chemistry transcended the accessible boundaries of the digital world and materialized on the DLR. I made it clear that I was up for grabs mentally.
      1. Charlotte and I.
      2. Aoife, Josh, Beth, Octo, Susie and I.
      3. specifically, the kitchen in DDH-C01.
      4. I am experiencing quite an anxious feeling writing this. I am wondering if you (see 5.a.i) will ever come across this (you will), and, as already mentioned, I am also considering how this will look to others (i). I am not trying to be confrontational, nor am I trying to excite any negative emotions in you.
        1. perhaps ‘not good,’ braggadocios, insensitive, possibly misogynistic depending on one’s social-political position. Regardless, I think of Crito:
          1. SOCRATES: Then, my friend, we must not regard what the many say of us; but what he, the one man who has understanding of just and unjust, will say, and what the truth will say. And therefore you begin in error when you advise that we should regard the opinion of the many about just and unjust, good and evil, honorable and dishonorable. “Well,” someone will say, “but the many can kill us.”
  1. Joseph Antonio Cartagena, better known by his stage name ‘Fat Joe,’ tells us, “We gotta be proud to be [insert point of pride here]. It’s almost like we cheating because we’re American and we live by American customs, but at the same time, we got that [insert point of pride here] culture. We cheating; we double dipping” (a).
    1. [Rachel], I am sorry for double dipping.
  1. No, I, the speaker, am in no way egotistical enough to believe that my act of infidelity has any actual bearing or contribution to suffering as it exists meta-conceptually or in the previously detailed Blake-Wordswordian model. In fact, I, the speaker, refuse to cycle this piece back into ‘suffering’ any further; if at all.
  1. I will leave the cycles to baseball.

Seth Canner attends the University of Greenwich where he studies Creative Writing and English Literature.



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