The Sculptor’s Method


I use the animal as a vehicle. I rock the horse forward and drive the cattle home.
If I’m reading the folds of a toilet, I might notice a small box full of ancient golf courses
and in this way prepare for the donkey’s future.
You might want to observe the decorum of self-sustaining ranch wannabes or you
might just visit the sand-colored pueblo without any trousers. Either way, the furniture
stays, anomalous as a purple February.
Still, a variety of wildlife is not the same thing as a choice of jeeps and you can’t
fly no matter which former reptile you choose to anticipate. You just can’t become a bird
because the bird is locked in your throat.
I use the window as an accident, and I write down what should have happened.
This forms the wire substructure for the verbal taxidermy. It’s not an original method but
I distort with the wing vents of my chosen lizard and chew loudly to make dinner at home
more exciting. This way several different genres participate in the unfolding. I can’t tell
you which ones because they visit at random. It depends on how much the window is
open and, well, what’s out there.
Then I cut loose the ovoid canisters and facilitate the removal of extraneous nesting
matter. If I think too hard about the reasons, they go away, but if I don’t think at all, they
harden and the substructure becomes brittle and nearly useful.
That’s why blind faith doesn’t interest me. That’s why the adventure is
accomplished without the intervention of inanimate objects or extraneous napping.
That’s why modulating a fragile protective covering, playful but dark in emotional
content, rendered with a flexible avian vocabulary and a childish sophistication, seems to
proportion the relevant measuring utensils.
Here, take this insect for example. It has legs and it can swim. To prove a point, I
once ate breakfast off of it. It lends a certain uncertainty to the aura of performance I
suspected I was establishing. Most of the time it does absolutely nothing. But it’s alive.
Sooner or later I’m going to have to kill it. But not till after I’ve finished using it.
When I’m finished I’ll be carried away. I’ll need a forest. I’ll live in the balance of
absences that brought me here.
I use the animal as an accident.
I might kill it but it won’t be me.
You see, it’s already in the stone. Modern weapons don’t account for it. Neither do
hydraulic devices or the eggs of whooping cranes.
When I arrive at the body of it, the weight astonishes me.
If I hadn’t done it myself, I’d suspect another world was forming.
If it gets away from me, I’ll follow it.
If I get away from it, it will follow me.

Fiction. Modern Abstract Fables.

(First edition, hardcover with dustjacket, 524 pages, $36.50 USD.)

Tunneling to the Moon: A Psychological Gardener’s Book of Days draws from fairy tales, a condescending of a 1938 Social Studies reader for 6th grade, an 1890 handbook on marital compatibility, numerous annoying educational advancement studies, the myths and legends of third-world countries and minority peoples, pulp fiction, a history of carnival side shows, folktales, frequent conversations with Crows, Owls and a wide variety of underground inhabitants, insects and the people who collect them, Joseph Cornell, Günter Eich, Russell Edson, the French Surrealist poets, the Quay Brothers, letterpress printing, and the author’s inability to channel his imagination linearly.

Begin from the beginning, catch up, read daily. Just refer to the Burrow Guide.