Liz’s Weekly Poetry Series: Letters To Wendy’s, Tweets From @robdelaney
When I declared LETTERS TO WENDY’S one of the most important books of poetry from my X-ish generation, I wasn’t kidding. It’s like Nietzsche leapt into the overmedicated, bloated vessel of Joe Wenderoth’s brilliantly conjured fast-food philosopher-poet writing “comments” to Wendy’s.
August 8, 1996
Foucault says knowledge wasn’t made for understanding but for cutting. For the Wendy’s worker, that’s especially true. The Wendy’s worker knows—he does not understand—and his knowledge is alive with results. It is only for us to understand. In understanding, we construct, justify, and secure ourselves above work. This is how we conceal the knives and restrict their us to the production of delicious results.
December 8, 1996
To stroke another customer’s head. Run my fingers through his hair and whisper to him: “you’re going to be all right…” I would be called responsible for doing all of this if he was bleeding to death on the floor, but I would be called inappropriate if I did it when he was in good health. I would be, like all trustworthy prophets, called a nuisance and promptly arrested.
September 22, 1996
Wendy’s will burn, Wendy’s will jerk, Wendy’s is open forever. Wendy, however, will never appear. Wendy will never speak or laugh—she will never give herself away. Wendy will never sit upon my knee, or your knee, or the knee of any living organism. Wendy will restrain herself in almost every fashion. Wendy’s will burn, Wendy’s will jerk, Wendy’s is open forever.
To obtain this book of poems? and then actually plow through is worth it. There is a twisted language when brought to life might be worth examining. Or, of course, maybe not.
April 9, 1997
Let’s lay all our drills out in the open. How else shall we ever come to know the full smothering brilliance of the gloss? This is no time to tolerate useless testimony! This is no time to explore the mammy system as if it could be regulated more effectively! This is a time for looking the other way! This is a time for leaving infants on stoops! This is a time, above all, for relaxation.
April 10, 1997
Resolute dissonance. I love the way the grass punches through the dream of a fixed ground and burns itself alive. The punch has a sound, as does the dream and the burning alive. They keep one another. They are a war. It’s not a war that can be won. They conflict—they inflict one another. I love the way the grass punches through the dream of a fixed ground and burns itself alive.
If anyone embarks on LETTERS TO WENDY’S, may I suggest the twitter accompaniment of tweets by @robdelaney ? (#terrific)
My dad taught me to read, camp, and stuff feeling down so deep they won’t manifest as a catastrophic stroke until 2039.
CAPRICORN: Write the name of your crush on a fruit rollup & make love to it behind a car wash.
Thrown up & shit on by my children before 6 AM. Now I’m going out into the world to pay it forward.
help me ,
I bet if you wrote the word “steampunk” on a piece of wood, a Mumford & Son would materialize & offer to buy it from you w/ a bag of silver.
My son just made a pants noise I’ll describe as “beef liqui-blast.”
Both LETTERS TO WENDY’S and @robdelaney ‘s tweets require prolonged exposure to really appreciate. And both leave me feeling mildly deranged.