‘inferior order or given order’, a poem by Astrid Lorange


Photograph by Simon Blackley. Reproduced under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic Licence.

baby vitality, blind spots, counterfeit gloom

worlds and theatres of imperceptible, antlike six inhabitants

the hardest rocks or ‘once and for all’ psychic far-off pure givens

travelling at quadruple speed

global repetition of swarms, deep regions and

species of rhythms, thick or crying behind bets

the latest and strictest mirror materials

tangles, gadgets and the law

I masturbate,

mouse over the image of

shades and varieties

in the new cruiser

eats as curves and poles

going on being divided in a single blow

for elements, physical surfaces or sexual drives

boiling points, foyers, accidents or

insect bites, names, or:

marine slime, liver, sea salt, seaweed, marshes, lakes, shells, little river, maize, cotton, fruits, salmon, sturgeon, herring, aquatic fowl, stork, heron, red geese, red ducks, insulated rock, table-linen, workhouse, excellent timber, slate, salt springs, fruit-groves, wild hogs, jackals, tobacco, ginger, pepper, sugarcane, indigo, mustard, dhal, opium, little garden, pea, potato, pineapple, buffalo, ponies, blood, sheep, poultry, jackets, silks, iron articles, axes, hoes, wax, elephant teeth, camphor, leather, hats, carpets, lacquered ware, snuff, carpets, gold and silver lace, porcelain, playing-cards, wax-lights, chemical products, dyes, soap, starch, hardware, musical instruments, linen, chicory, marble bath, handsome road, grenades, hot baths, railway, muscatel, wine, olives, rock-rose, quicksilver, granite, quartz, gypsum, light soil, pines, nitrous clay, ochre, fine emery, rock crystal, fossil shells, hot and cold saline springs, hemp, wolves, hares, peacocks, flannel, plate-glass, galloons, silver buttons, ample brown cloak, breeches, sash, gay-coloured string, fruits, flowers, barley, millet, anise, barilla, apples, pears, cherries, quinces, peaches, walnuts, chestnuts, oil, beech, fir, elm, corktree, brandy, hares, lions, lint, plaids, yellow amber, macaroni, potatoes, figs, cheese, soda, snow, lava, orange trees, sperm-whales, fish, willows, tamarisks, pomegranate, carbonate of lime, black stone, mulberry, hazel, mastic, wild vine, apricot trees, hawks, cranes, doves, magpies, thrushes, parrots, bear, fur, small but active breed of horse, legumes, mud, coarse hair bags, turbans, greyhounds, sandalwood, tinsel, cast-iron pots, cutlery, hardware, mules, bones, lamps, gems, white marble, rocky peaks, volcanic matter, large cloaks made of wool and goat’s hair (and perfectly waterproof), jujube, cherry, wild apricot, willow-leaved pear, raspberries, blackberries, flax, cucumber, melon, lynxes, deer, weasels, polecats, ermines, pheasants, mountain game, tortoises, snakes, cat, fine rice, vinegar, milk, bread, bows, arrows, drinking-cups, coffins, dried fruit, preserves, shoes, tomatoes, semi-transparent shell, turnips, cabbages, grapes, mud walls, clouds of dust, cocoa, salt-fish, water anchor, great bays, four peninsulas, teak-trees, cassava, birds’ nest, betel-nut, brass, sardines, snow-white dolomite, cinnamon scroll, rose-apple, scarlet blossom, small bones, inner rinds, jack-tree, pearls, valuable oil, liquor, coral, ghee, articles of diet, manure, clay, insects, stools, pestle and mortar, seeds, handkerchief, long cloth, the astronomer, school of design, sixty-two shallow lakes, coloured marble, theatre, soap-works, hot water pipes, planks, borax, medicinal herbs, battery tins, several museums, brooms, pudding-stone, cod, pilchards, skunk, chilli, drugs, cider, hides, cayenne, versified prose, yawning clefts, bamboo rat, curlews, quails, mandarin duck, mullet, carp, sea bream, oysters fattened in oyster-beds, profitable worms, banana, guava, pawpaw, sapphire, topaz, and river boats.

An earlier version of this piece was written for the Collective Task collaborative project.

inferior order or given order first appeared in The Lifted Brow: Digital, Volume 8, Issue 2

Astrid Lorange is a poet and Associate Lecturer at the College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales.