Paper Losses is JS Venit's fifth volume of poems. As the title implies Mr. Venit's poems, like all skywriting, are subtle, allusive and elusive. Reading them gives one the sensation of having traveled to places that now can only be indistinctly remembered, albeit with a vague sense of pleasure or twinge of regret.
Sensations of Travel is a collection from JS Venit's first five volumes of poems (Portait of a Mood of on Stilts , Skating Backwards, In the Time of Things, Green Colorless Ideas, Mnenomic Devices and Paper Losses) and includes some (then) new poems so that it spans the period from 1990 - 2010. Venit's poems are aethereal -- like skywriting and seem to vanish soon after they first appear leaving behind the sensation of travel -- of having been somewhere that, at the time, seemed, important and enjoyable enough, but like the passing of a dream or Freudian oublie has left an evasive and allusive trace, no more than a distant image of what had once been lived fully and felt but is now reduced to a wisp of cloud rapidly receding into a distance that can only be faintly touched, with, in the earier poems, a twinge of regret and oddly or miraculously in the later ones, a thin veneer of pleasure.
There is no hidden meaning. Surface is what they are. Sometimes they may seem straightforward, and sometimes they may surprise you like children who have taken unexpected paths, drowned in fog, and pulled down the stars at night. Sometimes they hang in the air or disappear without a shadow, like sand or gravel or the startled red fluorescence exploding into spring. But they are always there, erasing their tracks on the verge of disappearing or becoming something else, always changing horses in the middle of the stream.
In this his tenth collection of poems, JS Venit continues his strange encounters, finding a new depth as in the Museum of Sleep. After Labor won the election, Clem Atlee became PM. The surprised emcee staggers into the heat, driving squirrels downhill, delivering sheet music posthumous addresses more cracks in the coalfields. We walk into the blight of spring on the border somewhere between the Vistula and Colorado candlefish rise to adorn the outlet. Are these the only shadows that we know? They come from a different place like a country beyond some vague defensive distance to the sea. And yet they seem to know who we are, that weve been here before, that we come from very far away.
The Wolf and the Sufi What if I told you a story about the past for instance that soap is the dirt we buy that it lacks clarity and leaves the tongue standing alone that it scares us The leaves are not for the actual or the potential world or the fields in the actual or potential world But they rattle and still sell a lot of tickets I’ve been living with the willow of American speech in a hollow where the seasons seem old the stars of September seem worn and in that moment we always imagine the worst Later we imagine the past when it’s light enough to read by and we can get out of these second-hand clothes