The Dazzling Oppression of the Real #4

 Jude Dillon presents: John C. Goodman!

John C. Goodman


…Out! Out! Brief Candle

the sea is an abstraction

      a muddy sketch of colour and form

what are you doing here?

      “becoming a stranger to myself. –


                        a mind of cinders and ash

                                                                       “travelled a long road [I] [have]

                                                                                  from dungeon to grave

      making landfall

that’s where danger dwells:

in the transition from one element to another

in the pounding of waves on insensate rocks

the rolling of breakers on dreams and shores and beaches and stories and histories and myths and desires and legends and tales and identities and vertebrae and longing and isolation and frustration and failure and hearts broken and darkness and death and wiggly worms in the sand


“sought my deliverance [I?] [have?]

in the space between here and there

      (there is no space

      only spaciousness)

meaning coated my shoulders like beads of mist **

( colour/text//colour///text////colour/////texture )

)          of    of          of      of            of              (

there’s no controlling the waves

they come as they please and go

sometimes tickly bubbly froth

sometimes heavy as moods

tossing boats like angry words


there’s no control

      it’s out of control!

      [i*t’s !o}}u^t o&f c999((()))ontr++==ol!


                                               falling falling falling

                                               the freedom of g;sallpo sprw;lthos

                                               the many who went before

                                                           epp fof yjr ffrrf yjr esrtr yp;f

                                                           just the frop lurp


there’s no stopping it

no stopping time

it keeps coming on like a bad mood

pushing us ever further into the abstraction

      of future becoming present

      of what never was becoming our reality

      of w%oo00 @ast)))((( $Wpol…

to colour (vt): the state of being perceived

[I am colour][we are colour][they are colour]

that’s where danger lies

      in the transition of moments

      bringing the unexpected

      into the border between past and future

      the no man’s land of our existence

“Out of nothing I came, to nothing I will return.”


to nothing (vt): the state of remaining a victim of circumstance.

I am nothing [he is nothing] she is nothing [we are nothing]

      they are nothing [there is nothing] nothing is nothing

“Oh set my sail for distant shores [I] [have]

      the sea is a wide rough moment

      between coastlines of the past

      and wreckage of the future



where one can be a stranger to oneself

and no one the wiser 

Seven Sad Songs


/    \


/            \

II   II   II         II

/                   \

II   II   II         II         II         II         II         II

Estuaries of sound

                        resolve rivers

      of meaning


rumours                      and                  innuendo

And now the news: “A raid on The Oxford Dictionary of the English Language earlier today resulted in the release of seven obscene verbs. The verbs had been held hostage by the dictionary for several years. Taken to a secret location for their own safety, the verbs are not yet available for general usage.”

I want more

I want more and more

I want more and more and more

I want more and more and more and more

I want more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and

The lip of the cup

A kiss waiting to happen

Motorcycles repeat their roar

Echoes in hollow nerves

A quiet pigeon

Breath on a candle flame

Candy wrapper on the lawn

Magnum on the officer’s hip

It is a blue


all of it

blue ocean blue sky blue rocks blue mood blue music blue dog blue trees blue buildings blue garbage blue love blue gutters blue cars blue lampposts blue memories blue heat blue corpses blue sidewalks blue watches blue curtains blue hissy fit blue doors blue indifference blue railings blue horses blue fingers blue navigation blue rain blue drawers blue smiles blue veranda blue socks blue fences blue armadillos blue rockets blue interference blue hills blue departure blue you blue slowly transitioning to blue me violet me burnt umber me shadow me disappearing me absent me forgotten me








many are called by the sirens of commerce

but few ever get anywhere

buying CDs, chatting, watching TV, eating dinner, getting laid, shopping, getting married, having kids, taking vacations, watching TV, having dinner, getting divorced, getting a haircut, getting a performance review, getting involved, getting nowhere, getting laid off, watching TV, eating dinner, shopping, having a barbeque, talking, having kittens, getting some exercise, getting the shaft, getting screwed, getting a comeuppance, getting it on, talking, watching TV, eating, getting a haircut, taking off, taking a breather, taking what comes, taking a load off, taking it easy, talking, killing time, watching TV, eating dinner, killing


hold me up, Gilligan, hold me up, Rin Tin Tin, hold me up, Maxwell Smart, hold me up, Roy Rogers, hold me up, Spin and Marty, hold me up, Superman, hold me up, Elliot Ness, hold me up, Abbot and Costello, hold me up, Wanda Hendrix, hold me up, Anne Baxter, hold me up, Cisco Kid, hold me up, Hopalong Cassidy, hold me up, Johnny Ringo, hold me up, Matt Dillon, hold me up, Sgt. Bilko, hold me up, Ed Norton, hold me up, Jed Clampett, hold me up, Outer Limits, hold me up, Humphrey Bogart, hold me up, Steve Reeves, hold me up, Burt Lancaster, hold me up, Robin Hood, hold me up, Frankenstein, hold me up, Curly Larry & Moe, hold me up, Buster Keaton, hold me up, Buster Keaton, hold me up, Buster Keaton, hold me up, Buster Keaton, hold me up, hold

The north star holds

its place           in         the heavens

all        else                             spinning

and reeling

around                        the one                        still point

the hiss of tires on wet pavement

the view from tall buildings

letting the world roll by

trapped in a snarl of vowels

freed by a sibilant s

a consonant in motion

slicing through the tangle


The point of the stem

is cold with frost.

Broken ground heaved.

Thin green whispers of last year’s seeds

germinate in spring’s defiance.

An osprey wheeling

in a cloudless sky,

its shadow on the water.

The frozen weeds are living still,

their pulse thawing.

      “My grandfather told me, ‘Don’t go near the well.’

       I was five years old.

      I went outside and fell straight down the well.”

Buttercups have twined the daisies,

bordered by columbine,

the hillside a stroke of lupines.

The forest is a weave of leaves,

green shadows.


Victim of Hope



alter ego

alter     ego

alter                 ego

alter     my       ego    

alter     your     ego

altar  of the     ego

nails hold        the wood

binding lathe   to studs

(no one            builds like that           anymore,


“I don’t remember ripping the bandage off – when the bleeding started again – when I leaked into the future and the past – staining events with the rust of longing –

–          what is the meaning of life

–          what is the life of meaning

–          the meaning of life is what

–          the what of meaning is life

glass armadillos

creep through shattered halls

saving sturgeons and belugas

from mothballs of extrapolation


“the blood of a song

“the blood of a song flows

“the blood of a song flows through

“the blood of a song flows through my

“the blood of a song flows through my veins

“I bleed music


–          what is a meaning of life

–          what makes life meaningful

–          what makes life blood

–          what is the meaning of blood

chromium yellow

chromium blue

chromium vermillion

chromium grey

staggered shadows in the mansions of self

know neither pity nor grief,

the colours of our blood mingle

with bitterness and joy

pulled by tides of incandescence

of song


Take it like it comes

megalithic monthstrosities

tall buildings : sheep in the rain

it don’ matter if your hair’s too short

it don’ matter if your friend’s a liar

it don’ matter if your car won’t start

it don’ matter if the shoe don’t fit, wear it anyway

it don’ matter it don’ maater it don’ mmateer [m](a)ttt/e//r…

“The way I see it, ya got two choices: you either in or you out…”

dead town

eyeless buildings lipless parks earless bars drunk sidewalks

dead as squashed bug

dead fire hydrants dead parked cars dead cats dead grass dead air dead dreams dead aspirations dead ambitions dead ends dead serpents dead overtures dead reconciliations dead mommas dead emotions dead dead dead de ad //[d]…e…((a))//[d]

what’s it all mean?

the overpasses the busses the getting from here to there the litter the noise the bustle the clanging and banging the music the car horns the litter the stoplights the dirty looks the indifference the suffering the vomit the windows the air conditioning the hot dog vendor on the corner

what’s the purpose?

the rich people hustling trying to get more working the angles ripping off whatever they can

the poor people hustling trying to get more working the angles ripping off whatever they can

getting by from day to day to day to day to //[d] (think about it) [a] [;;] (((y))) – [think about it again))))

what’s going on?

i bin lied to jerked around put down down down denigrated disrespected ((used)) done over ticked off insulted dumped on cold shouldered ignored slighted trashed misled manipulated robbed scammed deceived trapped conspired against discombobulated confused

you is what you gets; does what you is

take it as it comes

whatever you can get

I’ll be there in a minute

…hang on a sec…

I said I’d be right back

can’t you understand?

just a tick

call waiting

will you hold,             please?


John C. Goodman lives in St John’s, Newfoundland & Labrador. His novel Talking to Wendigo (Turnstone Press) was short listed for an Arthur Ellis Award. His stories, poems and essays have appeared in The Fiddlehead; Otoliths; elimae; The Cartier Street Review; The Istanbul Literary Review and other magazines. He is the editor of ditch, (, an online poetry magazine.

Jude Dillon

Published by lenavanelslander

Lena Vanelslander swam many waters. History, Comparative Culture Analysis, Languages, Mythology, Literature, Poetry, too many to sum up. After a life of tribulations the turning point came in her mid twenties: she started to write actively poetry in English. Her melancholic and darkminded nature colour her poems to an individual signature in both time and space. Poems got published in the Stray Branch, Savage Manners, the Delinquent and The Sylvan Echo. Her first chapbook ‘Ma Chanson de Rien du Tout’ has been released in September this year. Her first book of poetry, written with Marilyn Campiz, Quills of Fire, will appear in November 2009. Currently she edits writers' profiles for and

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: