The Brooklyn Rail

JUNE 2020

All Issues
JUNE 2020 Issue



Appetite, the will to consume
a thesis declaration should unveil itself threefold:
in part a book proposal
in part an application to mentorship
and lastly the expression of a sustained interest–
the first in a series of revisions on a supposed succubae: obsession

your plastic qualities: mannerisms, pace, size
and markings incremental
modern or participatory cynic
grotesque or absolute devaluator
addict or universal symptom, event horizon of urge
waterbug on your back, you thrash

absurd or sometimes excuse for contact
and leave no fingerprints to trace
so still have venetian blinds
hanging scarred lines by sunlit burns
the brittle unfurled truth of commonwealth

concealed by a stranger’s silhouette
predominant experience of counter-essence
android rapture in the non-existent pith of eden
caravans burning rubber in search of rope
my environment, albeit earth
threatens the sweetness of this body

overripe, then crushed between
fruits poised to decompose
already dead with the fleeting window of taste
cobbled time prepared for tongues
a union of embankments

sometimes play husk, brittle
to replace an essential element of capital, action
to seek nobodies
arbitration of the insult crusted
nibbling worm, or point two archives meet
split nib seeped, spilt


Return oblique angel
digital history of origins
differend when material breaks
a thumb in eye ratio
from proto- to post-
analogic speech switching
flows through world matters
mouths agape
menthol fresh
double lapse prone
immolation swerve

Ana, the intensifier
she who operates from
proportionate connectives
symmetric, septic
cubit ways to say ‘yes’
but stands on no foundation
slate of deeds
a generic fruition mode
unlike you, the whole
symbolic standard
turns me fractionless
a deficient numeric
on my nerves rational
common storage cabinet
with a faculty for striking
difference between vessels
alpha privative, A.
selective mutism to rupture
in binary opposition to
green glass cool of speech
you win, bottle cap come loose

drying asphalt discordance
mathematics the somatic map
keeps stiff
aplomb digits
on a body of discretions
Ana, alongside
concats echoes to
a blade without breath trace
a vacuum meniscus
night pond full
chain shuffling of foot bound

Bastille Day

Bastille day weekend, seagull man worn
exhales phlegm rattled cough over swelling plumage
day-glo festival band from last night

like pollen, he is always here and the festival both
miscellany conjoined last sips
his key edges digging
horror vacui
adaptation of the orchidean word

Accounting for the Loss of August

So much so
I play with fire
so much so I
in proximity to this train of thought
that combs me now
to it am strapped
I thought it so
what difference is the act
what difference between sediment in the mind
and to act in the world?

Distance is the doctor
unwittingly you inoculate the mind from here
tear around these changes
the glacial melt eternity makes
it easy to dust over
the tracks of your species
hide red under winter snow
the petals bruised
and set forth from their sepals

— in coma stage ferment
fuzzy world
I deliver my action to you
you must take it
amber arrest at dawn received
and give the time we rock away
to the first chatter and siren
to defibrillate the clock
thwarted by parhelia


Rachelle Rahmé

Rachelle Rahmé has published poetry, essay and fiction with 72Press, Aventures Ltd., VLAK magazine, The Blue Letter, and FPBJPC. Recent presentations of her text and sound have appeared at Issue Project Room, MOMA PS1, and Roulette Intermedium. Born in Lebanon, she lives and works in Queens, NY.


The Brooklyn Rail

JUNE 2020

All Issues