1. A clean, white lasso. It has red strips at one end, circumscribing the cylinder of knit, marked like a talisman.
As in, “You’re thirsty because you’re afraid of your neighbors, and you grew up rich but your parents never let on.”
As in, “The thin thing swinging above your head, or the thing you keep momentous while you jump in and out, the silly flop of leather fringe on your chaps bouncing like a long-haired show dog—it’s from an earlier time: now they treat the systemic errors—the gaping horror of isolation, etc—like planned, satiable desires to be not-quite-taken-care-of. It’s a stadium of people watching you jump in and out of a bright white lasso that you are keeping elliptic. It’s a stadium of people with mirror neurons, jumping out of their skin.”
As in, “Remember, the sky is a circle, like a circle also a blade, like a blade also turning, like turning also boredom.”
1. A way to describe certain commercials.
As in, “The one where she discovers everything and shakes her head, and pulls out the box with the right emblem on it, and the scene wipes into perfection is very community. Her child comes back to life. She lives forever.”
2. Possessed of an appetite for minor stings, slight nettlings, low-grade neuroses (i.e., anxieties made of fiction).
As in, “A feverish community filled her mouth with sand. Suffocating somehow at the heart of all this sifting, she could feel it, a thrill horseradish-y and alien to the tooth. Native to the tongue, it was cultic. Its mystery’s name was worship.”
1. As if it were plucking the Great Web.
As in, “I avoided stepping on cracks, and apologized community to the stairs when I walked upon them.”
1. To make whole; to absorb into the godhead.
As in, “With enough sacrifice, you too will community.”
2. To cobble or otherwise repair shoes. As in, “Don’t go sojourning communitied with proverbs, and little else.”
Joe Milazzo is the author of the novel Crepuscule W/ Nellie, two volumes of poetry — The Habiliments and Of All Places In This Place Of All Places — and several chapbooks (most recently, @p_roblem_s). His writings have appeared in Black Clock, Black Warrior Review, BOMB, Prelude, Tammy, Texas Review and elsewhere. He is an Associate Editor for Southwest Review and the Founder/Editor-In-Chief of Surveyor Books. Joe lives and works in Dallas, TX, and his virtual location is http://www.joe-milazzo.com. Here in these definitions in danger are what these words now mean, or might mean, or must mean if they wish to escape the new world incommensurate with the perceptions they’re accustomed to inhabiting.
Eric Lindley is a musician, writer, and artist living in the bay area. His writing has appeared in Fence, Joyland, Tammy, and elsewhere, and other work at the Santa Monica Museum of Art, Machine Project, Telic Arts Exchange, The Knitting Factory, and The Smell. With Janice Lee and Joe Milazzo, he co-edited the online interdisciplinary arts journal [out of nothing] from 2009 to 2015. You can find Eric’s work online at https://likeoverflowing.com/