Sunday, March 13, 2011

3 Poems by Lina Ramona Vitkauskas


If you follow your intake pipe from the left hand side of the engine bay where it creeps up to the manifold, this is where the throttle body is.

—Beginning of directions to clean your throttle valve

You played me, quite frankly.
A quail’s breath killed in code.
The signal goggled our hands,
a shale supervisor wrung prison
gaskets from our clothes.
We performed oily samsara
every summer.

Define “shaving me.”
Reverse “type.”

Captivate the one, unmarked
mechanism within me
and mke yr monitr cum alive.

The immaculate screams
of wonder. The afternoon
is clairvoyant.

How many men?
How many women?
How may we help you?

Miro and Picasso knew
to make women birds,
to open all the butterfly valves
like a postcard from yourself
in the present. Later,

we had to fix this sentence to read:
“Your car is your metaphor
Your metaphor is your car.”

The Karate of Perspective

George Daynor must build me
a steel biome, lift me from soiled
napkins and molting trinkets.

I am interested in being electrocuted
by gingko leaves, in being Antoinette,
floating above karats of galvanized halls

in a dressing gown of cascading typewriter
ribbons and honeydew. I still shake from
a long winter of binneya* burrowing into

my rhubarb. I have no salt upon my palms
to reconstruct me from hibernation.
I am Sula Pitta** in Nome.

* An air-breathing land slug
** A species of bird in Indonesia.


Confess to them.
Offer a Protoconch.
Tighten their tourniquets.
Wash their cars,
laugh at their jokes,
agree with them that
the night is correct, yes, gods

and snowbirds share these black symptoms:
they are isotopes, elusive
muses. Vicariously ache
their existential plight.
Among vesper murmurs,
assure them they are relevant and “irrefutably magickal”

and fun.

Agree that a child's voice
is an absurd disguise. That
it's no accident that the lesson of civilization is alienation. Remain silent while they blast
you with subtle and/or searing
breath of lust and/or jealousy.
Become their dog. Dance, drink,

and smoke with them at the wax
banquet, sunset cruise. Lie to them
about your experiences. Fuck them.
Assert all human kindness is
a prawn. Nod in agreement.
Yes, forests, yes, guns.
Tune your glass antennae
below the blood-rust stairs.
Covet them as you burn
yesterday’s robin eggs. Take them
from the shiny police and call
them adorable, trashy, or contemporary.

* Arabic: “being obedient” or “the act of standing”

Lina Ramona Vitkauskas is the author of three poetry books/chapbooks: THE RANGE OF YOUR AMAZING NOTHING (Ravenna Press, 2010); Failed Star Spawns Planet/Star (dancing girl press, 2006); and Shooting Dead Films with Poets (Fractal Edge Press, 2004).