Names for Animals. Poems by Daniel Barnum, selected as Number 22 in the Robin Becker Chapbook Series.
Publication: March 7, 2020 [100 copies]
29 pages, 6 5/8″ x 8 1/8″
$ 9.00 + $2 shipping
Daniel Barnum lives and writes in Columbus, Ohio, where they serve as the associate managing editor of The Journal. Their poems, essays, and translations appear in or are forthcoming from Pleiades, The Offing, Cutthroat, West Branch, The Massachusetts Review, Tar River Poetry, and elsewhere.
then there’s the final nightmare of your origin
story. this place is substitution, the house
containing multitudes, everyone you descend
from, now gathered to initiate you into your own
secret heaven. whether you return to earth
or not, the corpse is yours. do what thou wilt
with whatever’s left, I mean . . . some days I swear
I catch the planet on autocorrect, fine-tuning
its tilt. remember when the east coast quake hit
six summers ago? where I was in the copy
shop, all of us strangers present could only fix
eyes with each other and shut up. customers
waiting ignored their phones and business
altogether stopped while we listened to seismic
shudders sound from everywhere around us,
not knowing what the fuck. I thought a tractor
trailer truck must have gone by fast enough
to buzzsaw bedrock with its metal mass. way
off, but just like that — suddenly, something
enormous and you hope someone looks back.
–Thank you to Barrow Street for first publishing this poem.