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Steve Barbaro



iffy iffy

pattern we’ve got here wow I mean what an iffy iffy shape I mean I mean it’s an iffy

iffy rhythm dang OK an iffy sequence display but wait geeze wait isn’t this scheme this

array its own raison d’être I mean OK is this kitchen table’s face not a not-un-oomph-

fully motion-scarce space that does somehow some unframed way catch torque via its

very own outlay but then wait  hmmm in that case what’s the best-case layout of day

break because OK see what we’ve got here is Z’s daily paper perched upon Z’s dining


[...] [...]

                plus plus OK the latter table’s also topped with grapes & buttons & cake ah

  look dammit behold oh would you just behold OK please the cake buttons grapes

     grapes buttons cake etc OK but but above all else let’s not forget the stupidly

   swoopy steam of the huge hot hot cup of coffee I mean OK look look it’s not any-

thing bad really it’s just smoke swathing a plane OK yes 1 whole dining plane & esp.

   the local daily oh so ready to be ingested & esp. its news RE: how the very soil on

     which Z dilly-dallies daily to gank the driveway’d news is set to be (ahem) en-

   gulfed in floods of 3 or 7 or 9 or even OK OK dammit 13 17 19 (ahem ahem)



the piles of old news though the piles those piles I mean as time passes there’s

   a rhythm there too OK OK a rhythm birthed by the very sundry news stories con-

    tained in each such oldtimey-ish set of sheets but wait OK wait what if what if

       said stories don’t quite fully permeate Z’s brain but instead skirt Z’s memory’s

reins because it’s not in sanity’s best interest to be too keen on floods say or on drone    

      strikes or the plight of refugees detention centers police brutality OK OK OK such



            but but OK what’s left in the wake of what Z’s memory maybe very smugly won’t

deign to retain is this recurring morning spectacle that’s also a face that’s also (ahem)

    haze that is also OK OK one huge cup of coffee ready to be slurped coddled stirred

 sipped etc OK but whose steam is right now shirking slash perpetuating its own mo-



         so OK wait though wait is it perhaps unforgivably escapist if not flat out (ahem)

mean to simply want to focus on what’s so continuously surfacing from its own (ahem)



             well not necessarily no yet ritually yes ritually Z is in fact worshipping poly-

   vinyl chloride cover-topping steam yes dammit OK the stupidly swoopy steam of 1

  huge hot hot coffee that’s revealing itself to be what though is it nothing is it (ahem)  

 everything is it a betweeny sorta thing IE edges ledges croppings sinews slidings

   sourcings seethings etc infinity or OK is it the very sort of event Z must needs des-

 troy just to get to getting around to seeing clearly through to the drone strikes police brutality the oligarchs detention centers the refugees oligarchs OK OK the impending


5. Cracks.jpg

Steve Barbaro's writing appears in such venues as New American Writing, DIAGRAM, The Common, 3:AM, The Elephants, The Yale Review, The Collagist, and Web Conjunctions. Visit him online at


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