Abby Millager




 fragility of falsehood

 ars satirica


           my vision hinges on the postulate that fallacy—the unexpected momentary collapse of authenticating mechanisms—might actuate a disturbance of sorts, that the overarching perspective which customarily validates the relational aesthetic between the inventive impulse and the essence of realness so often diminished by the ‘thereness’ of geometric forms and their corresponding figure/ground relationships would, rather than reflexively abdicating its hierarchical imperative to mediated space, exploit the cross-referentiality between that intuitive realm from which the carnivorous self lays siege to legitimacy, and the restrictive albeit reassuring body-politic of day-to-day understanding.


          this incursion of graphite into pressed cellulose means to embody the eternal struggle between that which is overtly transparent and that which is eternally opaque. the dry fuzz of obfuscation and clarity’s glittering razor set up an über-prophetic resonance whereby the underlying territory of energies (perceptive maxima of optimism and truth mingled with the visceral detritus of fear) implicates the chaotic embrace of self-actuation in the lingering tautology of evil. this phenomenology of disappearance reflects an ontological nexus at exact odds with the preternatural impulse effecting the cartesian mind-body split. as an artist who is concerned with beauty, it is my fervent intention to deconstruct this meta-spiritual fidelity to exact ideas, thus annihilating the mythology of linkages gripping our world in an ambivalent yet viselike embrace.


—Beloit Poetry Journal

(First exhibited at the Wilmington Fringe Festival)





Fata(l) Morgana


Sun’s last shrapnel savages trees, steel

twists as leaves. I try


to shake it off, but you

stay altitudes away, grains


of desert sand

lain end to end. 


                                                            I search for you


in the humming rocks. They pulse

against the outer facts of their shells, against

the trill of your bright armament. Sun glint

ejects from the muzzle’s strobe, sniffs


its prey, turns

to fata(l) morgana


                                                            Illusion, mirage. Gravel

                                                            catches my chest, travels


an undone road. How long can you breathe in

insurgent water? Flanks fray. Froth


creeps up the ripped river’s clear

and present fingers


that press oblivion

against your throat.


                                                            Let me be


your moss helmet, your forest charm, your

perpetual coat. And you—



you be immortal, you song, you rhythm,

tides high—expanding—


you salt sea

rain always comes back to. 


—Agenda (UK)




 I’m Not Listening! I Am Flying.

on Leonard Baskin’s portrait of Wm Blake


 A perilous path divides his face: the public side, its lucid pupil,

its respectable shading—


and the Other—night river gushing

from the Galaxy of Un-Reason. Yes,


this eye is blind—overexposed,

a burn, a Peephole


to the Infinite. God is every Man, Blake’s voices say. One thought,

fills immensity. I search my own head, find


Pastries, Paradoxes, Orchestrations

of the Angels of Hell

I must attend to—


Worlds at stake, Powers

and Energies dragging their prey

through sharp grass, clouds boiling down

the harsh declines of Judgment’s shoulders.


Exuberance is Beauty; I uncover Racks, Blades, Buckets, Fires—

Scaffolds to swing from—I can stand the rope!


But I can’t smash past those smeary windows

you people hold me to.


The soul of sweet delight, can never be defil’d. Gluttonize! Fornicate! stop stopping me!


You don’t know what God wants.


—Delaware Poetry Review





Transfusion Reaction

oil in the Gulf, as seen from the Delaware Beach


Gashed earth won’t scream—

bleeds itself, arterial,  


ocean—the soaked bandage 

pressed against this beating.


Dark blood transfuses the Gulf, congeals

at edges, festers


in estuaries—a soup: ancient

bodies of plants, choleric


pasts back to haunt, whose foul

humors’ ghostly fingers


slide into some marsh just as

our naughty doctor mines the body


of girl after baby girl. No one

reacts, not until


a million little girls



with their birds and fishes,

the black rubber hands.


 —Poets for Living Waters (featured)  






I cannot look at you,


            transmit instead,


signal like squid.  Blue-black wash silks the place

                                                            between, rides air

            like lingerie, opalescent


            soap.  Can you feel it

guile your shoulder, wire its slight tight tentacle

                                                            over your neck? 


Salt, weed, scent of oat.  I see behind my eyes,

            my chest, tiny wings—a weakening


bird beats my surfaces, presses pushes raises empty

                                                            skins, mindless

            as rays,



as ice.  I feel them hovering, detached tents.  So naked,

                                                            I am


jelly in an urchin shell, surf green bulbous kelp,


            I mean invertebrate.  Do we


know each other?  Oh yes as tongs know flesh, as fat

            recalls the spit,


as Vesuvius, Mauna Loa magma hits the sea

                                                            two feet away,

            my Hiroshima.




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