Saturday Sep 23

MossThylias Thylias Moss, MacArthur Fellow (1996) and Professor Emerita at the University of Michigan, is now working now for Thylias Moss Writing LLC. She is the author of ten books, including Tokyo Butter and Slave Moth. Her 11th, Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities RED DRESS Code, New and Selected Poems is forthcoming. She is the creator of "Limited Fork Theory,” which she offers in the following websites: The Institute of 4orkological Studies; The Mid-Hudson Taffy Company, and Lexicon 97.  In 2016, her video poam, The Glory Prelude to a Widow Shrine System, will be part of the "Ellipsis"exhibit at The Pulitzer Arts Center in St. Louis, Missouri (15 April 2016 - 2 July 2016). "Crazy Salad Day Moment" is part of a collection of prose poams: LFMK Looking for My Killer [where controversy breeds]. "My Galactic Octopus" is also a video poam about beauty possible via MS (multiple sclerosis). She has a YouTube channel (the forkergirl channel , where she made most of the video poams. Her son composed and performed most of the music while she arranged the soundtracks and wrote and performs all vocals. She also has a blog, and you can also visit her author page at Amazon.



My Galactic Octopus
the rapture of a forking, forking nervous system


The nervous system and circulatory system
are like some kind of trees, right?  
 
I mean, you can see that right on the scan  
 
But they’re upside down;    
 
the brain is the root of these trees,  
 
they’re growing out of the brain, but  down    
 
from the brain, not up  
 
unless I stand on my head or something.  


Anyway, on the scan  
 
I saw something else:  
 
The nervous system tree when it was all stopped    
 
on the scan, when it wasn’t really, obviously an active,  
 
an active system anymore, an active system anymore  
 
when it was all stopped  
 
And making a picture of what my head was like  
 
At the time of the scan…  Anyway, anyway  
 
on the scan the branching system sure looked like    
 
those high power lines I drove by on my way to the hospital    


and all the time, all the time I stayed inside one small branch    
 
of the Milky Way, one tiny arm

of a galactic octopus  
 
but like a museum one you know  
 
because the activity couldn't really be seen;  
 
it was just a model, yeah, yeah that’s a good model  
 
of what’s inside me because I’ve also got  
 
a little power failure going on.    
  

Some of my nerves  
 
fork around damaged areas and the signals  
 
interact in crazy ways, yeah, yeah real crazy.  
 
There’s no chaos or anything like that because    
 
my legs and hands get a message  
 
and they obey the message they get  
 
It’s just not the message the brain is transmitting    
 

So my hands felt like they were wrapped in burlap  
 
a foot thick—I couldn't grasp anything  


There was so much distance between me    
 
and anything, anything  
 
other than the burlap….  
 
I had some kind of cocoon hands  
 
for much too long.  


But after just about a year, hands came out of that wrapping  
 
that was as real to me as my skin  
 
that’s not quite so rough as burlap  
 
and then my feet once again could bear weight; I  
 
could see them all along; I could see them  
 
but they had no substance until I could feel them    
  also  
 
until tracing the soles of my feet with the tines  
 
of a fork  
 
made my toes  
  curl.



crazy salad day moment

the great mystery story is still unsolved.
we cannot even be sure that it has a final solution.
[A. Einstein & Leopold Infeld: The Evolution of Physics]



for the sake of my killer, I walk to Ludlow’s Smokers’ Palace, start the day right, like the day before, get coffee and a muffin, lemon, poppy seed and cranberry, mixture is popular, all mixed up, sacred and profane, there’s not more convenience anywhere in the world, sooner or later, a killer will take notice, the sure things eventually get noticed, I have a soft spot for the London Times that still follows Whitechapel where the Art Gallery is hosting “Faces in the Crowd: Painters of Modern Life” through the end of February – they are hooked on Pound’s haiku – who isn’t an apparition, who isn’t a petal on a wet, black bough – popular, this one will soon be a notch on her killer’s belt, if he pulls it too tightly somewhere around me, forcing my last breath into his cupped hand, the holes in the belt might leave markings in the pattern of a small octopus’ suckers – I have a thing for them, a knack for recognizing certain potential, soft thing, soft knack, the octopus connection, o-links, o-o-o-links – all mixed up, crazy salad, I will be called Red Back when all my blood pools there, soft spot – I will take on the name of Australia’s famous spider, they thrive even in the virtual Museum Victoria because They can live almost anywhere but do especially well in the man-made, disturbed environments of both country and city, they are prodigious breeders, so it makes sense for me to be on my back, Only female Red-back spiders bite people, that makes sense too – my habits make it easier for attackers I’ve been preparing for since allowed to walk to school alone, and that is why I have these habits, to get it over with, to free me from living each moment waiting for assault – once that’s behind me, I can get on with either my life or my afterlife, so the sooner the better, I’m tired of dragging my suspicions everywhere I go, flirting with my killer, giving him every chance for advantage, it doesn’t happen to every woman, but there’s no good way to rule out any woman in particular, even corpses can be violated, have been violated, so there’s a name for sex with the dead, a need for the word necrophilia, this is a fact, there are so many facts, more than anything else, popular, pity – I do know someone who on prom night took a girl he drugged, to a funeral home, broke in, thrill central, crazy salad, went over the threshold, put her in a titanium casket, expensive, popular, silk lining and silk pillow, soft spots, not available at any motel he would have gone to, no explanation necessary, and he took her picture with his camera phone – the very size of a compact of budget foundation, not that she needed any further application of tawny, any more bronzer ever that was supposed to disappear, soft spots on soft cheeks – messaged it to her and to their mutual friends who claimed to be so jealous of them, tiara on her head just like the official prom queen’s, and then he made consensual love to her, documented (mms via wap: multimedia messaging service via wireless application protocol), that she didn’t remember – she planned to be just as anesthetized if she ever gave birth, why not – the point was the baby, she’d wake up to a beautiful thing in her arms as if the child just fell out of heaven, what they all say, better than the stork, nasty bird, more related to a nasty buzzard than to her, better than the cabbage patch, what is found there, bias, soft spot, scavengers, aside from believability, falling out of heaven sounds like eviction, a Lucifer drop, she certainly wasn’t getting pregnant that night in that casket, he promised, day they met, all mixed up, crazy salad day, to wear a condom, and she held onto that promise, soft spot, mixed up, bias, because a boyfriend who would go to such lengths to give her the prom of a lifetime could certainly be trusted, and since she was only passed out, deep daze, he wasn’t really lusting after the dead, though to each his own, preferences, soft spot, crazy salads, and I didn’t give his name because I promised not to, a woman of my word just as he’s a man of his – he told her what happened, and she was fine with that – thanked him, a courtesy call, wakeup call, mixed number =



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italicized lines are from the virtual Museum Victoria.




“Galactic Octopus,” copyright © 2016 by Thylias Moss. Published by arrangement with the author.   All rights reserved
“Crazy Salad Day Moment,” copyright © 2016 by Thylias Moss. Published by arrangement with the author.  All rights reserved.