Sandra Knoss

No Line In Time

Writing contest winner: poetry

nibble syllable hold two notions wait to connect she_I aims at the event absorbed into knowing dislodging the last rested pen-eye

unsettlers emigration-fuelled imaginations pall at landing shadows striated women strain open sterile eyes mean men made rigid snuffle sniffle leave belief trail tailings in scummy pond around a vale of broken bones teeth displacements bred resentment and entitlement in children closed to another history

Grandmas’ lousy childhoods or immigrant mis|adventures leave a marl on your genes altering epigenetic expressions braiding anxiety or resilience

when the angel of science and the angel of history backed into each other verse junctures sluice she_I time transits longitude and latitude

Treaty 6 great granddaughter to the boundary daughter signed Crown in Right assigned homestead Township SE25-55-14-W4 moonshine fine shone off calluses breaking bush broke the old country habits ways of flesh broke body bought bags purple and gold regal we thought brought by the queen we recited Crown Royal ruled and on the underside bootleggers triumphed correction lines of demonstrated the curvature of the earth

off by a distance measured from the north pole to magnetic north circling and failing a landing radar tones warnings defend ‘empty’ patriarchs perpetrated endogamy detonated all ease gasoline nailpolish books escape undergirded the a b cetera of daughtering flails mothering flails grandmothering

then’s test patterns horizontals and obliques she_I could adjust frames impenetrable crumbling pixels of news create recreate untested wherefrom hearts crystallize thorns and swords adjust the screens to story now’s threats corporeal erratic unpredictable against patterns tested with other nows

propel false equivalence to enclose risk in a pronoun a speaker ravelling a destiny toward what wasn’t before and arriving slant making word objects from confusion and shaping a wreckage she_I moved steadily forward to the lines responsible to strange the estranged in time that unfolds unidentical to itself and in allatonceness

investments beget ownership land gold stock people and weapons territorialize legally and spiritually moulding to congeal possible interests she_I pay attention when our aunt tells how her unsettler family weaponed to protect their homestead claim on a so-called warpath read hunting trading trail etched by horses now encaused by slide rule compass surveyed

give authority borders garments reap gather lay money clothe unclothe deprive dispossess vest vestment harvest invest investiture divest

injuries falling thru time met history untold at these longitudes but landed in bodies without memories wounded across time with unworded new world loss worded christian conquest in the new old world wounded else deemed other

eurocentric slug she_I legacied monotheism history written by conquerors Pagan might have passed muster root and frame military ambush shed thoughts’ tourniquets phoenician celt iberian yearn for a simpler orderly tale it is the elisions that dumb

social sciences education left she_I empathic sluggish on larger knowledges dark ages in northern europe dank mouldy castles and hovels jousts beheadings taxation…then the crusades infidels made us dumber about our east 

dark in the north she_I learned was entire Medieval until light penetrated lattices reflecting pools geometry of the stars in polyglot empire past yore leaks through another sieve

word worlds trace lines and squibble centuries gold spices incense amber silk precarious stumbling camels rivers to outside |forene foreine foreyn| territories congeal my pen-eye now keyboard eye aims a compound eye canted on this ledge of unlearning the probe ship moor slav convicts powered pillage sounding castilian arabic hebrew creeping to Turtle Island conquest the straight up goal delivered from the Reconquista

mercury shimmered light shook foil conquest stories dapple plunder detritus worded the world astrolabeled speech quilted with expulsion storied the dark moor

Unfortunately, some of the formatting of this poem is lost because our website does not support custom layout. Please see a print copy of Briarpatch to take in the original formatting.

Sonja Greckol resides in Toronto and is grateful for subways and bike lanes wherever. She published two poetry books, Skein of Days and Gravity Matters, and has taught, studied order and disorder in jokes, and conducted human rights and gender-based research. This poem is the beginning of a larger project which probes medieval Spain.

Tags:   poetry writing contest writing in the margins

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