Jared Stanley's The Outer Bay is 23 poems written in Merced, California in the SUMMER. The Outer Bay is a real estate term for Merced, realtors looking at forms of the Real. In these poems, the Real makes blisters and wrinkles. Its nature, trains that blare; its mind, a head of the town that gets kicked in. Political poems in a landscape of sensuous garage sales and actual trees. The dirty west of nostalgia, rope burns on the eyes: a mental music lush and troubling. Like water rationing, this is for the benefit of every California citizen. —Lauren Levin
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Are they like rooms, these
tattoo machines and supplies for a mountain bike?
I never want to hear your name again, Joseph Cornell,
because what is your name.
An item of stately interest to a cockatoo
inquiring of sleep, why did I dream that?
Am I to stare down
and soar like document’s eye
glazed, a butterfly to leave behind?