Steve Gilmartin

On Art

Art opens up a domino effect, for we were built with moving parts. And time is sweet, but what if time was spliced and left us out, forgotten, drugged in surgery, unpainted? Or are we pre-flame? Birds seem fully possible, but are they looping too thickly? Does this trigger expulsion? And will that be acceptable to this project sky?

Each sky is unwieldy, involving nine successive plates. And one can't avoid the rumors of one part bacterial design, one part chemical catalyst driving all subsequent state business. Rules have a tendancy to come together and bend like bits of brass.

The rule in this sector is: let law equal opaque, safe, secretive protective ovoid housing. The egg. Is it a mistake to let in a few stupidities or, as they're sometimes known, "entranced constituents"? Air is disappointed with nitrogen. The secretary ate up all those not-so-pretty producers and immediately felt the power pulsing. It was like art hitting the market.

But the art itself could freeze laterally, locketed subjects opening their treasures to air. For instance, those birds. Can they become themselves posed in the hidden wire that looks like movement? Caught perfectly. Or if not that, try shooting it. Open and shut bird blossoms. So that— See? Look how the birds open up inside the paint. What must have been pain followed by the architecture of pigment.

There! Can you see it happening? That quick mineral flowering?

Went to Get the Money

Yes, I went to get the money, Yes I... No, I went to the back of “the nose.” And then did those things. Drugs? No, just a few trips to where I had to go and back. Nothing special really got angry a few times, it's true. I went to the money, monied myself all over like sunscreen, so what. With armor and humidity. I got through to them the style I was looking for, clean lines. I sent a thank you note. I traveled two hundred miles south and got to watch. She was like a perfect portfolio. Nice, I said. What about linked investments? To the midsection. And what about the ringing aspect? The skeleton aspect? She got it. My own sports injury held me tenderly, like I was a crisp new high-denomination bill. I waited for my vehicle, something between a car and a tank. It protects and holds me don’t hold me back don’t cross me. I skipped like the malfunctioning machinery in that silent Fritz guy thing that was on exhibit during my free time but so . . . what I got was the money. That was my promise to myself. Faithfully executed. The ordnance began as dusk cuddled against the lake of disappearing things. What can I say? I feel poetic at such moments. There it goes again homeland two beats over two. Disassembly. Two over two and disassembly. All of us, all of me. Thanks, I said, I’ll take it from here. I know how. Clap on the one.


She sits there. No, floats no place no name no chair waiting to breathe to be discovered. I could go home two words and know she wet wool wouldn’t be there and she will wool wouldn’t come. Every comfort comma is reserved for their skin, two unhinged awkwards. So say it’s a recessive, no, a forgotten part of the brain comma floating in black coordinates. Erase. It’s about to rain and be unkempt. Think of her in your greed for black. Trying to find the shift of material in the brain that comes after its net of comma comma associations. Its masterpiece and dull-driving around. What happens after it leaves its question? Forget please two words but curve straight to her pleasure or be poor.


The film stock became “now.” He couldn’t tell whether vision moved at the same speed as the frames. The human eye may have jerked as if reality were segmented, unable to tell itself whether there were spaces between its perceptions. He wanted the first movie to carry the original sensation of having popped cork-like out of someone’s head.
               The island exists at 26 to 28 frames per second, but it remains stationary. From this, all else would flow, culminating in an ecstasy of champagne. The movie would be about how the organic replication of consciousness gets screened, rewriting, editing and projecting. How the screens of consciousness convert us all into darkened multiplexes.
               The big grant came in and he taught it to greet him brightly every morning and alertly run his errands. It was like having a silent sweetheart. The silence at the root of everything. And the silents, of course.
               There would be a soundtrack. The water—brilliant, reflective, and rippling—always looked good, would work for practically nothing. There was some back and forth with publicity, which wanted to cause an international incident and drown the singer in strings.

They shot on location in extreme heat, no one ever free of stains. We’re all swimming in samsara, someone said. Their wrappers told them when to nudge, and when to wink at the industry and kiss kiss. Vision moves more slowly than the frames of reality. The director was good at stating. The outside world snakes around and explores our heads. And, meanwhile, the continuity of perception is an illusion. Then the studio stepped in with a revised script. The writer created a history of the island over lunch.
               Breezes kept ruffling in off the delta take after take. No one will notice or care they’re not ocean-based, everyone kept saying. It’ll hit the audience like bad bus service, he said. Thousands of dollars floated away. Water was shunted into rehab. A much needed intervention, yes, but what about the movie? We see things at 13 frames per second. So we are in a movie, just with slightly different standards and technologies.
               A regulated external movement of somebody’s hand captured another year’s worth of funding. Then a really big lens opened up inside everybody’s head. The movie pulled your face by the chin. Wasn’t that what it was supposed to do? Costume followed by weeping and then the other five stages that ultimately lead to acceptance.
               And that’s when the narration, actually the voice of God, comes up deeply embedded in the grain of sound, the air molecules forming corridors, transmission popping an almost subliminal bass through the foundational layers of the brain, which slowly begin to glow as if from something beautifully preserved. There’s no script for this, it’s in the it’s-always-now contract, go look it up, and God gets to ad lib. God says,
“Why to blended you...to blended you to smooth too
smooth too smooth… Ah, perfection.”
               And then more staring at the vile island, the body of water, waiting for something else, and everybody parking on the same questions: God does voiceovers? And has a substance abuse problem? Are retakes an option? The AD manages to slip into an anonymous tide of movie people, imagining his life as opera, forging checks, letting everything ride, awakening to the smell of palm trees framed by a prussian blue sky.
               The metal is always extremely hot, except at night, when it’s not in use.
               Everybody says their schedules will remain flexible.
               According to the most recent press release, the movie will be called “Island of Stillness.”

Modern Professionals of Life

When someone acts gently, as a modern professional of life, that person can lift their class and watch it dissolve like powder in water, as if they had tenderly made utensils to use on a lot of refreshed money. Recently, professional tips to the unwary have generated so much more, each accumulation no longer having to listen to your initial proposition.

Certain political questions are psychocratic, and so the monotheistic tales become vices straining to contradict one another. Like the sun, they pretend to be casinos, entirely dependent on the other for their slobbering vivacity.

The logo heavies, without as much as a whistle and with the sympathy of they who can’t be named, aver that the millions who are poisoned are the actual invasion. And there are sure fire-ant soldiers whose source is credentialed power. If any recently developed soldiers care about being a fiery powder, the new will sink its teeth in to extract and use their stories in sacrificial ceremonies. Religion means going up, and the church acts with the modesty of an elevator operator. War on the rooftop terrace today, along with racquet ball, row after row, shiny and finely strung.

Depending on which of the psychocratic jacks and jills you normally caress, the force credentialed is rarely contradicted. Each psychocratic dialogue exists for all time. This is because of the many millions whose eyes say yes we minutely fear the world. The exocratics’ stance toward public things would like you to follow their advice and become a pretty cascade of emptying echoing solos fading slowly into a sheet of crystallized ether that hovers and vibrates inches above a lawn of freshly installed silicate.

In order to understand the inadequately named intelligence in these materials, our thoughts and dreams float above soon-to-be loving nations, wearing pearls strung like perfectly formed aerial charts. Nameless powderdom credentialing is an expanding entry level career, dominating state actors near and far, and orbiting the good-for-bad world. Anyone can see that our seamless new juggernaut, like a safe friend able to pay faster and faster, exhibits a regime’s smooth immensity, similar to that of American actors liberating revealed social ignorance on I-am-maximum mental screens.

The huge bag-job title also reveals our ignorance in not forcing social guns and contraband energetically on the little homeless world of wanderers. Once you become gentle enough not to resist the smoothness of credentials and the gentle possession cycle path, it’s time to upend surviving videostreams with your peaceful dispersal units of delicious afterworld crusts and toppings.

Our unpodlike master has been disfigured in manly times without resistance and yet he remains standing. In truth, the more that newly initialed touch-screen soldiers look to this example—Panoptivision strung high—and are moved to open themselves to total management of internal mass short-circuiting before the full span of a healthy career, the better able will be every true people to spawn, spread their wings, and ricochet home.

Steve Gilmartin is the author of a chapbook, Comes Up to Face the Skies (LRL Textile Series, 2013), and his fiction and poetry have appeared in many print and online publications, including Cannot Exist, Drunken Boat, E ratio, Eleven Eleven, Lunch Ticket, Mad Hatters' Review, and Rivet. He lives in Berkeley, California.
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