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Ezquisite Corpse - A Journal of Letters and Life
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Featured Poets

Tomaz Salamun, the celebrated Slovenian, in translations by Anselm Hollo, Joshua Beckman, and Christopher Merrill (with the author)

Rodger Kamenetz, known for his rootful search for his Lithuanian Jewish soul, gives himself to dreams here without losing political bite

Suzann Kole’s Foreign Romance: "dislocated dreams and small talk"

Jack Walters gazes through time like a bear through a trout stream

Joel Dailey: “Things aren’t what they used to be,” but how exactly

Mike Topp: We made Topp and now his verses make us toppy

Dennis Tyler: “It was in Vienna that I first became intimately aware of the game”

All Poetry & Nothing But

Chad Faries mined a 19th century children's encyclopaedia.

John Z. Guzlowski:
Ode to Paul Carroll

Sam Abrams: His classical period

Paul Amlehn: “And if I become the ancient traveler”

Lawrence Ferlinghetti: The maestro sounds the depths of his ever-fresh citizen’s rage

Norman Minnick: “I assume the duties of a poet” We hope he knows what he’s getting into

Bogdan Tiganov: The fresh face of the millenium, via Romania

Frank S. Eannarino Jr.: “There’s the sheep all huddled”

Shane Neilson: “Public Sex Acts” and “Bird Men”

Gwen Albert: “sometimes our flag/has a golden fringe/around it,” and then something happened, Albert explains

Aaron Simon: “There is some artifice involved, naturally”

Jim Harrison: “Young Love”

Marius Dumitru: “ockhamist flamboyancy” The takeover of Ingles by Romanians continues

Vincent Farnsworth: “thank the ankh in thank” and we thank Prague for this fierce ex-pat

Tim Gilmore: “House of Assignation”

Utahna Faith's high-energy physics follows the gravitron

Bill Evans: “Semi-automatic squirt guns”

Richard Robbins: "Waves of skaters swoon in their cyanide”

Barry Gifford: Proof that nobody visits Romania without extreme consequences

Beverly J. Poston: “long nights of Jesus slipping in and out the door”

Terry Jacobus: Chicago Beat transcendentalism explained

R.A. Pavoldi: “no hygienist ever kissed me like that”

Matthew Byrne: “You'll pull that drainplug from the wish fountain.” Sometimes Matthew is very bitter.

Nicole Pugh: Fresh bloom from the swamp of the New Orleans School For the Imagination (NOSI)

Brentley Frazer: “and though you soap his wounds he dies”

Leonard Gontarek: “I put on my Medusa mask and look for cats.”

Frank Giampietro: “My parents are right about many things” You heard it in the Corpse first, folks!

Parris Garnier: “bowl poised under a testicle cloud” She’s talking about Chicago

Carsten Rene Nielsen, translated from the Danish by David Keplinger: “they wear their faces inside out”

Myra McFawn: “throw it against the wall” is what she does here, but there are other things, not sure, but what a beautiful name!

Laura McCullough: “without a permit, rising from the streets” Political, we think

Dan Encarnacion: “Blacjack Poppa squeezed”

Jorge Lucio de Campos, translated from Brasilian Portuguese by Hugh Fox

Patrick Herron: “Joyous Fucking Poem,” “altered found poem originally titled "Live to be Joyous" If you need something altered, Patrick is the man

Joseph Wood: “I stood apologizing to the tiniest children”

Janine Canan: Victor Hugo, Marina Tsvetaeva, and herself

Erika Mikkalo: “They claimed the amalgam no mercury contained.” They claimed that but, as it turns out, poetry stops at nothing

Toby C. Siegel: “Finger valleys, thick galaxy ooze” Editorial consensus has it that this is a sex-jammed sonnet

Piotr Gwiazda: Three poems wherein young poet considers return to oceanslim

The Clash of Civilizations

Forrest Aguirre on the clash between Osiris and Allah

Bob Slaymaker
on the clash between individual egos and the World

Paul Krassner: The U.S. wages Nuclear War!

Steven Hoadley on the encounter between an American psychopath and a rich Muslim

Earl Lee on Tupak Shakur and Princess Diana

Stephen G. Bloom on clashing strains in Academia

Derek White on Jewish guilt meeting the ghost of Martin Luther King at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis

Doug Lasken: Why the author quit politics!

Greg Hyduke on the vile habits of Chairman Mao’s son in Hollywood

Jeff Vandermeer: Excerpts from “Pocket Guide to Eccentric & Discredited Diseases,” on the clash between diseases and doctors

Tom Bradley on the meeting in Hiroshima of an all-American spy with a middle-aged Russian demon-whore

Roberto Perezdiaz: A fabulous journey of inner and outer borders cymbal-clashing in the Americano psyche

Summer Brenner on the clashing pasts of Elsa’s internment

Dean Lalane: On the world’s most audible clash: Spanking!

Jose Torres Tama: “Espanol Is Still Verboten Ici Dans Les Etats-Unis,” a clashy clash

Jose Chavez: Mother, you are so embarrassing! Age clash!

Marc Estrin: from The Lamentations of Julius Marantz, a novel about a physicist who invents an anti-gravity device that brings everything into conflict including the Pentagon, the World Council of Churches, and the Sierra Club

David Lemaster:Santa Claus washed down the little red pill with a shot of Kentucky Bourbon, 100-Proof

Martin Kohn offers meeting with God

The Art of Marriage

Peter Freund: Annie Karney

Karen Ashburner: Thanksgiving

Dan Fante: the inimitable Fante plumbs “Wifebeater Bob”

Nina de Gramont: A Bee Charmer’s Heart

Steven Hoadley: Mistress Mayhem

Joseph Young: The Corpse advises a long period of engagement

Ryan Smith: Soft-Stroke: A Tragic Comedy

Paul Beckman: Love and Marriage across generations

Tim Millas: An intense incident of “frigging wonderment”

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From the EC Chair

Hot Off the Corpse Press - The Surre(gion)alist Manifesto by Max Cafard

THE Surre(gion)alist Manifesto
& Other Writings

by Max Cafard
for info see Corpse Mall
and also cafard@corpse.org

Willis Barnstone can be reached at Wbarn6@aol.com

Letters & Glossolalia

Simona Blatnik on Corpse mistake! We stand corrected!

Elle Attend tends to a contentious orthographic point

Dean Lenane defends the dissing of English food in the Corpse

Kane X. Faucher aims a common-sense missile at dilettantes

Mark Beggs reflects upon the occasionally phallic nature of Professor X’s language

L. Weiss: A dispatch on graffito found on Japanese suicide sub

Christian Prozak: Three Shamelessly Naked Reviews: Bukowski, Fox & Rimbaud

Harvey’s Index: Personal Data

Kenji Siratori on Artificial Insemination (for real)

Edward Mycue: a lovely poem in memory of Lawrence Fixel

A Common Reader by Andrei Codrescu: an occasional column recording moments in reading

Foreign Desk

Paul Polanski: from the book “To Unhcr With Love,” Polanski’s extraordinary transcriptions, set into verse, of Roma people’s talk in ex-Yugoslavia, after the war,

Diana J. Wynne writes from Cyberia, which is Everywhere

Dean Lenane on special assignment to European toilets

Senegalese Writer on Bush’s visit to Senegal

Gretchen McCullough: Notes from Syria, arabesques of unassailable bureaucracy

Dan Lewandowski: Exodus 11 explains for the eleventh time why everybody had to get out of Egypt

Ric Reichert blows the lid on a famous Death Valley Kitchen

Josh Gilman, our peripatetic vagabond, send Field Notes from Bangkok

Tom Bradley in China, on the trail of the Cultural Revolution

Korea by Ian Christopher Hopper, featuring “the monk who never sleeps”

Lucy Griffin Appert: On Meeting Glamorous Men in New Orleans

Jack Collom: reporting from Boulder, Colorado on that hot spot, the Naropa Institute

Pets & Beasts

Liesl Jobson: A Dog’s Life – or when it’s time to emigrate

Jack Marsall looks in the eyes of his cat

Christopher Orlet: Pigeons, Elephant

Ali Fahmy: The Crowd Forms (panthers, penguins)

Kevin McCaffrey: Revenge of the Meat God (dogs)

Lee Meitzen Grue: After the Olney, Texas One-Armed Dove Shoot

Chris Koelbleitner: Spooky (artist, also beast)

Myfanwy Collins: We thought a prayer might be nice here, especially since the speaker in the poem wants to go back to the woods where she will either live like an animal or not

Money Talk & Art

Lee Vilensky: Buy Low, Sell Twice

J.D. Smith: From the Management

E. Martin-Clarke: Art 101

David James Callan: Financial poems

Ricercar: a Manifesto: an important art-critical statement concerning cars full of rice and overthrowing the overthrown

Ron Childress: “Sherman Marches South” We think this may be a report from our Foreign Desk in New York but it’s also about art, sort of

Hedonism: Theory & Practice

Joseph Gelfer: The Brits Abroad and the Philosophy of Holiday Hedonism

Toby C. Siegel: The Hankerchief and the Lovers

John Orne Green: The Evocation Series

Rebecca Cook: “must be her body opening to her fingers” Must be.

Marie Drennan: “The Body at Risk”

Laurie Jones Neighbors: Flagstaff

Eddie Woods: A Gift from the Goddess

A genuine Exquisite Corpse: Rocky Mountain Joe's by Joanna Jaworowska, Andrei Codrescu, Michael Price, Michael Rothenberg, Terri Carrion, Jane Dalrymple-Hollo, Anselm Hollo, Jack Collom

Alexandra Chasin: Kant Get Enough

Marc Estrin: from When the Gods Come Home to Roost, a novel wherein Max, a classics professor, realizes he is getting old, and watch out!

Zounds of Music

An interview with Grant Jarrett, Keith Jarrett’s brother, conducted by Alan C. Baird

SuZi on SHREDD: This is your brain on drums! (follow the link to hear the zounds

Threats Against the President
by Paul Krassner

Groucho Marx said in an interview with Flash magazine in 1971, "I think the only hope this country has is Nixon's assassination." Yet he was not subsequently arrested for threatening the life of a president. In view of the indictment against David Hilliard, chief of staff of the Black Panther Party, for using similar rhetoric, I wrote to the Justice Department to find out the status of their case against Groucho. This was the response:

Dear Mr. Krassner:

Responding to your inquiry of July 7th, the United States Supreme Court has held that Title 18 U.S.C., Section 871, prohibits only "true" threats. It is one thing to say that "I (or we) will kill Richard Nixon" when you are the leader of an organization which advocates killing people and overthrowing the Government; it is quite another to utter the words which are attributed to Mr. Marx, an alleged comedian. It was the opinion of both myself and the United States Attorney in Los Angeles (where Marx's words were alleged to have been uttered) that the latter utterance did not constitute a "true" threat.

Very truly yours,
James L. Browning, Jr.
United States Attorney

At the time, I was the host of a radio talk show on ABC's FM station in San Francisco. Naturally, I went on the air and read that letter. And then I added, "Well, I'm an alleged comedian. Kill Richard Nixon." But I would never get away with doing something like that in these ultra-fearful times.

In July 2003, the Los Angeles Times published a Sunday editorial cartoon by conservative Michael Ramirez. Depicting a man pointing a gun at President Bush's head, it was a takeoff on the Pulitzer Prize-winning photo from 1968 that showed a Vietnamese general executing a Viet Cong lieutenant at point-blank range. In the cartoon, the man with the gun was labeled "Politics" and the background was labeled "Iraq."

"I thought it was appropriate," said Ramirez, "because I was drawing a parallel between the politization of the Vietnam war and the current politization that's surrounding the Iraq war related to the Niger uranium story." He said that he was not advocating violence against Bush. "In fact, it's the opposite."

He explained that he was trying to show that Bush was being undermined by critics who said the president overstated the threat posed by Iraq and lied in his State of the Union speech about Saddam Hussein's alleged effort to illegally obtain uranium from Africa for nuclear weapons. Bush has since admitted that the accusation was based on faulty intelligence.

"President Bush is the target, metaphorically speaking," he said, "of a political assassination because of 16 words that he uttered in the State of the Union. The image, from the Vietnam era, is a very disturbing image. The political attack on the president, based strictly on sheer political motivations, also is very disturbing."

Nevertheless, the cartoon was enough to prompt a visit on Monday by a Secret Service agent who asked to speak with Ramirez. He was turned away by an attorney for the Times. The agent had called Ramirez and asked if he could visit. Ramirez assumed it was a hoax and jokingly said yes.

"How do I know you're with the Secret Service?" he asked.
"Well," replied the agent, "I've got a black suit and black sunglasses and credentials."
"Sure, come on down, and make sure you bring your credentials." The agent arrived half an hour later.

However, in an interview by Brooke Gladstone on WNYC radio, Ramirez said, "The firestorm began actually with Matt Drudge's report on Sunday evening, which was a little interesting because he had the headline on his report that said that I was being investigated by the Secret Service. And I really wasn't contacted by the Secret Service until the next morning at 10:30."

Gladstone: "Sounds like he has a line in to the Secret Service."
Ramirez: "I think Matt Drudge is with the Secret Service."
Gladstone: "Now, threatening the president is against federal law, and it's the Secret Service's job to protect the president against potential threats. Do you think that Bush's security detail should have felt threatened by your cartoon?"

Ramirez: "No, I think that this is a pretty famous image, and I think the use of the metaphor [is justified] especially in light of the fact that it really is a cartoon that favors him and his administration." That irony aside, if Bush were actually assassinated, then Vice President Dick Cheney would be demoted to the presidency.

Other examples of the thought police in action:

A man who shall remain anonymous sent Bush a letter saying that if he required a smallpox shot for the troops, he should get a shot himself. He was visited by a Secret Service agent. Another man, Richard Humphreys, happened to get into a harmless bar-room discussion with a truck driver. A bartender who overheard the conversation realized that Bush was scheduled to visit nearby Sioux Falls the next day, and he told police that Humphreys--who was actually making a joke with a Biblical reference--had talked about a "burning Bush" and the possibility of someone pouring a flammable liquid on Bush and lighting it. Humphreys was arrested for threatening the president.

"I said God might speak to the world through a burning Bush," he testified during his trial. "I had said that before and I thought it was funny."

Nevertheless, he was found guilty and sentenced to more than 3 years in prison. He decided to appeal, on the basis that his comment was a prophecy, protected under his right to freedom of speech.

In August, Donnie Johnston, reporter for the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Virginia, wrote about the trickle-down effect of such official repression:

"A few days ago, a public official called me over to his car to discuss his displeasure with the war in Iraq and the way the Bush administration is handling the nation's economy. This well-respected man would talk only from his vehicle, saying he was fearful of criticizing the president or his policies in public. Before our conversation ended, the man told me of other public officials who also are fearful of speaking out. 'You have to be careful what you say in public these days,' he added...."

"Almost daily, someone informs me that he is scared of openly expressing his views. Even those who do dare to speak out do so in hushed tones, fearful of what ears might overhear. In the politically charged atmosphere that exists in America today, having the wrong person hear criticism of the government can lead to trouble. That became evident recently when an entertainer [a singer] who innocently joked that President Bush had 'chicken legs' was banned from performing further at Borders Books and Music in Fredericksburg."

The nation continues to gallop toward a police state in the guise of security. And, in the process, rampant paranoia has now become our Gross National Product. Some elementary schools have even gone so far as to ban parents from bringing cameras to record their children performing in the annual Christmas pageant, because authorities are afraid that those videotapes might somehow find their way into the horny hands of breathless pedophiles.

Paul Krassner can be reached at www.paulkrassner.com


Alice Henderson
Miriam Wosk
Skot Olsen


Claudia Stevens: “The Poisoner on the Train.” Our fabulous playwright is back!

Wang Ping: IZUMI SPEAKS in a voice so sweet and dolorous the music will haunt you forever

All Poetry & Nothing ButClash of CivilizationsEC ChairFeatured PoetsForeign DeskGalleryStage
Hedonism: Theory & PracticeLetters & GlossolaliaArt of MarriageMoney TalkPets & BeastsZounds

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