Secrets

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The depth of my soul cannot be measured by the lack of currency
in my possession.
The coins of your success do not notch failure in my heart, which
lies forever in your thoughts.

Many talented Golem walk, wander the streets of cities, such as
Nashville and Toronto, convinced of their importance. They light
the pages of the military’s internet.
They are not my army. But your conscripts into the columns, churning
towards honey and God amid the eternal dust.

The secret you keep from everyone is: nothing you have or possess
will be kept safe; everything will be taken, everyone lost is already found,
nothing you task is sacred or profound.

I am the thief who has stolen these moments, remaining
unconvinced the poet’s garret suggests anything, but the poverty of
your own inabilities you please yourselves to call imaginations.

More wealth is mine than you could dream. And that is how I keep
the world of your possessions, with a benediction and a song: a heartbeat.

Dance now, in your cage of bones, as the flames burn higher. Don’t
ask me to help when all along I have done what I can, offered sustenance:
thrown all things up in the air the better to be seen.

And all you’ve done is to dispatch the crows to steal the shining stars
and pretty things you could never hope to own.

This is the embrace, the kiss you have been waiting for: a secret even
now you have lusted after, and towards.

There is no end.

©Dean Baker

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“The most unique set of poems I have ever read.” “Having read DARK EARTH by Dean Baker my first reaction is WOW. This was written for me.”

“Dean is a true comic poet as well, full of those sly interventions and evasions, slights of self, recriminations and elisions… He’s the kind of poet that gets under your skin and stays there like a song in some dark noir alley that sings to you of love and death suckled on good old home-grown truth. Through his exceptional and distinctive poems and prose poems you will be fully engaged…”

“The key to Dean’s art is its unique subtle narration of certain moments that are never revealed in the full natural disclosure of facts, but are rather revealed more subtly in the voicing of certain affective relations between memory and mind in this ongoing inquisition with the sordidness of our unlived lives.”

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In Its Beginnings

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Every time I show you who I am,
you set me on fire saying Ash is such
a wonderful camouflage against disguise

For the patient kind not seeking to surprise,
love is the ordinary task
of managing consciousness and fine things

With pliers against skin, that velvet sin
no more, you bring me nothing
in the chemical exchange of mysteries

Undefined in our new century, we
map the boundaries unexplored
and fittingly prepare for the next disappearance

To materialize at our door: soliciting
butterflies who applaud our heart,
minus the clumsy contraption of wings

(©)Dean Baker

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“An inspired set of poems. Dean gets to the essence of a subject.”

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In The Land Of The Blind, You Must Exorcise Daily


There are those women and men whose observation
consists in an exaggeration, a statement made
by which they stand and proclaim that any logic,
any slight chance of disagreement betrays:
no affinity between you and I, none now or again

You have challenged my throne, knave or fool
you must begin to earn the abasement which I
endured, for ages even though
on the way you’re ex deus machina, and such
certainty invites the hallucination I dare not

Speak nor entertain, thus remaining yours alone –
shadow puppet to a fate abandoned long ago, phantom
noises echoing endlessly down those empty corridors

From which you strive to stray, limning the pain
the chalk efflorescence tainted now marking
the crime for which you stand in, whose safety
in abandonment eventually
you make haste to escape before it becomes memory

©Dean Baker

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