Ugly Duckling Presse


Michael Thomas Taren

Poetry | $12 $9
Spring 2015
Out of Print" absolute precision of the senses."
The eunuch in Michael Thomas Taren's eunuchs is the singer, the troubadour hallucinating the next one thousand and one nights. Pastoralizing the abject, this figure of the servant cleaves to an "aggressive sentience" and despite his enforced deformation achieves a freedom beyond the procreative masterstory. In Hellenic times, the eunuch was he whose flesh was shed so he may bring the bull to sacrifice through Pluto’s Gates. What does this servant know? What does he tell us about the doors of mirage and perception, about the artifice of reality? Excerpt ˇ


from "Poem"

Drinking blood for the first time.
Passive beams ferried like lanterns through waist-high wheat.
The waist high wheat.
The hopelessness.
As I loved you and as I saw weeds doling
And vacillations doling, and viruses opening
And pushing from their middles appendages
Tipped with lethargic ovules
And metal-like bundles that accrue and loosen the plaque
A worm pitched across the roulette table
With a thousand pixilated crotch shots
And the wind's varied displeasure.
Crotch shots spread like fresh butter
Across the pale blue sofa. That was the point in my brain when
Doling, doling.

Close ˆ

About the Author

Michael Thomas Taren is a carpenter's wife who likes gardening. He is author of Eunuchs (UDP, 2015) and is editor and cotranslator, with Tomaz Salamun, of Justice, forthcoming from Black Ocean. His cotranslation with Purdey Lord Kreiden of L'Ile Atlantique by Tony Duvert is forthcoming from Semiotext(e). They are currently translating En Ménage by Joris-Karl Huysmans (Wakefield Press, forthcoming). Their photofolktales can be seen at:

Advance Praise

I know 7 manuscripts of Michael Thomas Taren. They are here. And they will stay in American Letters.—Tomaž Šalamun
If Cnut had taken DMT, he’d have traveled to some fairy ring on Venus, Eunuchs in hand, certain of nothing but the certainty of what these poems offer us: an absolute precision of the senses.—Sara Nicholson
Your balls are resting upon my foreheads : I am now under Roman protectorate. I will never forget the first time you ever called me Mommy. We were playing Kid Chameleon at the Home of the Popcorn Festival. For 1thousandand101001nights we drank each other’s blood mixed with Four Roses and wore vile raiments while fucking crowned with animal's heads in our small teenhoodbed. In the first dream you had you were a young boy, and your grandmother was making meatballs, and she called you and all your brothers into the kitchen so she could give each of you one meatball before dinner, fresh out of the oven. That same night you realized you were a grown man at his desk writing this meatball memory, and the memory started like this : "The first night we played the Nativity scene on repeat. You read the veils and I looked just like Marie-Magdalene and I helped you to the bathroom before you were saying everything in 2D and I watched you pee and Jeremy complimented your orange briefs." This book is about rubis rubbed on faces and feet-shaped luminescences of myrrhh, ages passing, and the androgynous man convivially living with the animals, his cousins. This book is the tale of the 1010010101000101 and 10001 nights before Scheherazade ate my kebab, and of how we swapped boots on ectasy, and of the night we accidentally wore swimming suits and forgot all about it, and of the night I broke my shoes at Timewarp and you gave me yours and danced for 21 hours straight barehoofed before we passed out together on GHB and awoke on a morning and all sinks from where we’ve drunk all night read, ‘ NOT GOOD FOR DRINKING’. There are cyclops dumbly bowing at your feet each time you exclaim, ‘Hey you dropped something’. When I am old you will put on my soul. On acid I offered you to see galaxies in particules of dust, and you declined. We were listening to Moss Icon that whole night.—Purdey Lord Kreiden