The run of history in a thick soup of rain The brown colored condiment in a clear bottle The inexpensive aftershave and give away shampoo Two pairs of runners on a canvas chair.
An empty tin Unironed shirts Traffic sounds rattling in the moist breeze A historic evening of words surrendering In the mouths of politicians in sombre dress Grey hair dyed dark Tasteful tie with moderate knots, The co-ordinates of sincerity in the eradication of war.
Television-dressed leaders, consigned by history To a passionate cause, lining pockets, in the equality Of flags and parades, a jumble of yesterday’s news Holding the chips for tommorow’s game; cold-coiled Reality a level of talk and trust constantly tied, tested And untethered by events, departure and return, The simplistic consistency of two tribes, vying, in wait For a sign of belief in each other’s rights In the conflicting song of a patriot dead, dying for truth And lies put into our heads, centuries of silent wrongs
A recession has hit America at such an angle that everything has been called into question. The thoughtlessness of fin de siecle America has been replaced by mistrust, envy, and defensiveness. In this atmosphere, new imperatives emerge: to sort out wheat from chaff, gold from dross, truth from fiction. These imperatives are enacted in solitude, as the poet takes a scalpel to the body of his experiences. Adam Fieled's Equations is a vivid manifestation of a new, scrupulous American consciousness. It is the effort of a poet to elevate the carnal with intellect, and to create a memorable chiasmus between them. The frigidity of post-modern verse is replaced by a new romanticism, that is not romantic. That is the central endeavor here, and it is performed with panache.
Adam Fieled is a poet, musician, and critic based in Philadelphia. His books include Opera Bufa, When You Bit..., Chimes, Apparition Poems, The White Album, Beams, Posit, Early Poems 1998-2005, Disturb the Universe: The Collected Essays of Adam Fieled, and Returns. His work has appeared in Jacket, PennSound, Poetry Salzburg Review, Blue & Yellow Dog, Tears in the Fence, The Argotist, Great Works, Miporadio, And/Or, Blazevox, and in the &Now Awards Anthology from Lake Forest College Press. Some of his poems are in the process of being translated into Italian, and his poems have been taught widely. A magna cum laude graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, he also holds an MFA from New England College and an MA from Temple University, where he teaches.