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From: Vol.07 N.02 – Writing in the Pause

Two Poems

by Edwin Torres



to sleep of anxiety

we find ways to dream of anxiety while sleeping through it

to dream of the relentless pounding of anxiety

we find ways to declare anxiety as a replacement for sleep

to darken anxiety by sleep of it

we find ways to achieve darkness

to close our eyes in a darkened anxiety

to be reminded of anxiety during sleep

to achieve a darkened anxiety while closing our eyes in the being of anxiety

we find ways to know that we are sleeping

to sleep in the knowing

to describe to a lesser being the hierarchy of darkness

to the being of a room lessened by becoming darkness

to the lesser being lessened by being

to assume hierarchy by being lesser than

we find ways to achieve status by stating anxiety in the realm of sleeplessness

to sleep in a darkened knowing of a lesser darkness

to know there is another darkness

to drop one for the other

to one being the other’s opening

to encompass the lessons of concentration as a guise for meditation

to spell differently the idea of quiet using meditation as a lark

to leave this

to become the one reading this instead of the one sleeping

we find ways

what is there to remember

waiting deep in the folds

of pixelated grey matter

what lies beyond the new day

an alarm that doesn’t want to sleep

in my house steady as a breeze

a sound on a waking world

ready so not for change the orange sky

falls through my pockets and I think

it’s not me it’s the world

unrest at an easy juncture I step

on a long night and nowhere

was there a manual for keeping sane

in the middle of the street heart sterilized

in the back of a throat what is there

to remember






we find ways to isolate truth

to isolate power

by calling on the shapes that save us

the shapes that survive us

out of brain into body


we call on our instincts

to isolate hurt

away from emotion

to protect our power

we call on our truth

to attempt deflection out of heart


we call on our hurt

to isolate deflection

away from the shapes that save us

the ones that define us

are the ones we call on

to survive our truth


we call on our finding

out of knowing

away from doing

we find ways

to isolate truth

Published: October 2020
Edwin Torres

Edwin Torres’s books of poetry include, XoeteoX: the infinite word object (Wave Books), Ameriscopia (University of Arizona Press) and The Animal’s Perception of Earth (Doublecross Press). He is editor of The Body In Language: An Anthology (Counterpath Press). His work appears in the anthologies American Poets in the 21st Century: Poetics of Social Engagement, Who Will Speak For AmericaPost-Modern American Poetry Vol. 2, and Aloud: Voices From The Nuyorican Poets Café.

An Australian and international
journal of ecopoetry and ecopoetics.

Plumwood Mountain Journal is created on the unceded lands of the Gadigal and Wangal people of the Eora Nation. We pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and to elders past, present and future. We also acknowledge all traditional custodians of the lands this journal reaches.