Not a Prose Poem by Matthew Burnside

(Here’s a sentence without words, which you are not currently reading because it isn’t written on a screen or paper, and I am not the author, and you are not the listener because there is no sound in the slither of syllables, no jangle in a quake of consonants, and it is decidedly without punctuation, and there is no character in this prose poem named Ned, and Ned isn’t nursing a broken heart, there is no Ned, no Ned I tell you, Ned is dead baby, Ned is dead, because this isn’t a prose poem, it is neither prose nor poetic, it is not an assemblage of contradictions, it is not flowy sigils merely imbued with metaphorical import, it doesn’t consort with the imagination, doesn’t have birds in it—birds with beautiful angelic wingspans that could level skyscrapers with their enormous monstrous girth—and it isn’t bleeding glitter from a head wound, shinily seeping, there is no head wound because there is no head and there are no thoughts, no synapses firing, no neon nerve pistons, no bouquets of ghost wiring, no thoughts, no thoughts and no thoughts, no content, there is nothing here to read, no here here or there there, because there is no reader and there is no reading, there is only no, there is only, there is, there, and all the waking things a mirage. Now shhhhhhhhhhhhh: the knives are dreaming.)

Matthew Burnside is a writer.

Photo by Chris Chow on Unsplash


Return to Issue 29 Contents