Pleis-to-cene by Clara B. Jones

Noun or Adjective: the Pleistocene or the system of deposits laid down during it (~2,588,000-11,700 ya)

Stevens said beauty is born of death, but isn’t Physics
what we seek in darkness? What use had an orchid
to a meteorite’s mass (M) while Triulzi faced

a banking crisis, and Turkey mourned explosions
in Istanbul—suicide bombers killing 37 after
meteorites barely missed Earth? European rugby was

winning, and genes explained differences between men
and women, and a mother said Clean your plate.
Children in Aleppo have nothing to eat. Leaf-cutters

crawled 3 meters up an Andira while jaguars climbed
higher—reaching monkeys sunning on wet branches.
Meteorites are older than nucleotides since heat causes

flowers to grow in the Smokies older than Tetons forged by
glaciers in the Pleistocene when Homo appeared at Olduvai.
Everyone is a publisher engaged in common work

though subalterns lead where markets can’t control the
margins. Aren’t you interested in provenance? Something
about the present moment is fixed, and this is the

rule—rbc>0—the Truth composed and decomposed though
unknowns vary. Space. Time. Orchids find landscapes bound
by pink and white, but don’t come home unless you plan to stay.


Bio: Clara B. Jones is a retired scientist, currently practicing poetry in Silver Spring, MD (USA). As a woman of color, she writes about the “performance” of identity, alienation, & power & conducts research on experimental poetry & radical publishing. Clara is author of three chapbooks, & her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous venues.

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