Two Poems by Olivia Wood


Well, what do we do when it dies?
With the red floor of death salting its
wounds at us.
It’s good to make penance out of other things.
Hardy work, death work.

The miracle occurs when you name the true thing
like metallic taste of loneliness or dream which was
the weight and texture of cantaloupe or the large
rattle rattle rattle of a curse coming to find you.

Well what do we do when it dies?
When it died suffering?
If there was take
And it was bad.
The residents of the town pass their hands over doors in the afternoon, listlessly.
One full of dread, one distracted, one whose hands have been newly animated by admiration.

The currency of the dead does not ascribe much value to pity.
The loose havoc of death touches you.
Drives down to the quarry, and in a game of spin the
PVC pipe, kisses her first kiss.

Its good to make penance out of things.
Some would rather try and give back the verbs:
Tear, Get, Wreck, Abscess—
and call it law.

But sometimes when death touches you you become constructed by death.
The lake and your orgasm twitching at the shore.



Social as in it is populated.
Populated in that it is inhabited.
Punctuated because we made monuments
and moral fabrics and punishments so
severe they were made pervasive
but could not be spoken of
or could not be fully understood
even in their speaking.
Resting was facile and unincorporated.

Moneyed as in there were bodies felled.
The region exposed to water poisoning. Legs abstracted.
What are the requirements for demand to exist?
Different kinds of numbness pervade each century.

It is important to resist ahistorical poetry.

People die inside systems and become
the sawdust used to alleviate fire risk.
Define marginal utility.
Others suffocate on shaded cement while a civil servant
Bears down.
Which system of logic and empathy you apply
to the system you inhabit says a lot
How is a demand schedule created?
About your popularity and tax bracket
and sex habits and favorite foods and drinks.
Things can be made specific as easily as they can be obscured.
Define the paradox of value.
There was scaffolding put at the base of the river in order
to pass very tall trees so that they could later become masts.
What is the production possibilities frontier?
A face in the black noon.
That tone which is clean white and keening
toward self immolation.
Saying something you felt was beside the point,
arms losing feeling in the dumb July air.
How is a nations wealth expressed
How is a nations wealth expressed?

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