TOM BECKETT Engages
Cadaver Dogs by Rebecca Loudon
(No Tell Books, 2008)
Putrifictions: Cadaver Dogs by Rebecca Loudon
A moment decays in its telling, tolling our evanescence. It smells unbearably sweet. Like zombie sweat.
we are a story problem
Outside our window: murderous icicles rain, points first, piercing the snow covered earth. Am I imagining the spreading red stain?
It's good to hide the smell
with smoke and incantations.
It even cures cancer.
Open the windows, Tom.
There is wildness and menace in this book. Sensuality also. I feel myself to have been addressed. I feel somewhat alarmed.
we'll talk again when your children
have sewn razor blades to their lips
These are poems palpable as blood oranges.
bees inside the corn husk
night swung its sugary gardenia stick
Not to explain or paraphrase or gloss, but to say: "Look at this!"
you licked yourself like a human
laughed and kept laughing
Cadaver Dogs howls, nips, humps and growls. It rolls in some serious shit. Sniff it out. It is a marvelous book.
(Note: the italicized segments above are all drawn from Cadaver Dogs.)
In the 1980s Tom Beckett edited and published The Difficulties, a journal which became well known for its critical issues on Charles Bernstein, Ron Silliman, David Bromige and Susan Howe. More recently he curated the E-X-C-H-A-N-G-E-V-A-L-U-E-S website which presented 40 in depth interviews with poets. These interviews, together with supplemental texts by each interview subject, have been published in 3 handsome volumes by Otoliths. Beckett's Unprotected Texts: Selected Poems 1978-2006 (Meritage Press, 2006) is available from Small Press Distribution and Amazon. Additionally, Otoliths has published This Poem/What Speaks?/A Day (2008), a collection of 3 longer poems.