Online Exclusive

Four Poems
The Tabernacle

But it is nothing 
that stands against the welter of impact

dog-eared with dusk    a projection
of dusk

its lack of light reported on tile
finds a foundation

its violence 
perfectly contained
closes there

in the body 
pierced by coherence—

its archways and aqueducts    sunken charts
and basins of overflowing light 

that shelters nobody
no body
as sown to its den


A Subject Trace

He awaits the breaking 
news of the nuclei    flaking outward

absorbed onto a surface 
of inducement 

He is at once a subject    whipsawed
with a greater efficiency 

From his commission 
recanted in microtone 

the moist earth is unafraid
of brutality 

arid static    channels of devotion


Memoria Technica

Between the body’s
capital and its harbor,

a stratagem of circuits are in gradual exposure.

There’s no power
to persuasion, nothing

disrobes or welcomes

your combine parceled to the cinder,
nothing severs 

or liquidates 
its application.

Provide a feeding tube.

All the toothless blades
are enough.

Gash me, here.

An unstitched hem is astray.


Detonation Point

Say this isn’t why 
we detonate. 

We molt out of a habit,
its ideas that wash us 
blank, back into a variable.

I brace for the dust
cloud, an ocean 
that goes uninjured,

an ocean I stand beside,
shoreless, an ocean that cannot
say ‘aglow’ behind my eyes. 

Matthew Gagnon’s reviews and essays can be found in Jacket, The Literary Review, and The Poker, among others. Poems have appeared in Boston Review, Colorado Review, Denver Quarterly, and The Nation.