By Cyrus Console

What is it with you Tony you describe
Everything precisely as it was
Even the way you are nodding now
On your hands and knees, sort of touching
Your forehead to the floor. “Another’s back
Is one man’s element.” “Another’s heart

Is like a horse’s legs.” There is no quick
Way to another’s heart but through his back.
There were some things missing from my room
When I came in just now your pupils seemed
Vanishingly, as it were, large.
The elephant’s innumerable scars

Were all we ever talked about outdoors.
And when I broke my mind I shot myself
Mercifully permanent epistles
On temporary problems. Kind of sad.
And how is your internet ladyfriend, one of us asked
But Tony only shook his head

(Today’s selection is from The Odicy (Omnidawn, 2011), and appears here today with permission from the poet.)

Cyrus Console is author of The Odicy (Omnidawn 2011) and Brief Under Water (Burning Deck 2008). He teaches at the Kansas City Art Institute.

Editor’s Note: Read Cyrus Console’s The Odicy and you will be lead by Tony, the antihero of Console’s modern epic, on a journey in strict pentameters. On the other side you will emerge crusted over in sugar, modified by chemicals, in a world where color is not to be trusted. Akin to the aha moment at the conclusion of Planet of the Apes, you will at some point realize that this ineffectual hero is one of your own kind, that this world in which chemicals of warfare and chemicals of food are one and the same is the very real world in which you live.

A Note About the Omnidawn Series: Not long ago I attended a reading of Omnidawn-published poets at New York’s Poets House. The evening was filled with incredible talent and a palpable dedication to the craft of poetry that I wanted to share with you. I am honored that Omnidawn was willing to partner with me for this series, and am thankful to the poets who have agreed to share their work here so that I may help spread the word both about Omnidawn Publishing and about the talented writers they support. The Omnidawn Series here on As It Ought To Be has been extended one final week to include Cyrus Console, a poet that the series would not be complete without.

Want to read more by and about Cyrus Console?
Buy The Odicy from Omnidawn
Boston Review
pax americana
Octopus Magazine

About Sivan Butler-Rotholz

Sivan is the Managing Editor of the Saturday Poetry Series on As It Ought To Be and holds an MFA from Brooklyn College. She is a professor, writer, editor, comic artist, and attorney emerita. She is also the founder of Reviving Herstory. Sivan welcomes feedback, poetry submissions, and solicitations of her writing via email at sivan.sf [at] gmail [dot] com.
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