“Slease refuses the comforts of rootedness, stability, permanence. In doing so, he represents what the philosopher Rose Braidotti identifies as the model of nomadic subjectivity “in flux, never opposed to a dominant hierarchy yet intrinsically other, always in the process of becoming, and perpetually engaged in dynamic power relations both creative and restrictive.” For many years now this “world alien,” as he jokingly calls himself in the interview with Wetherington, has been writing poems that celebrate flexible identity and mobile imagination. Equally introspective and retrospective, Play Yr Kardz Right beautifully illustrates his nomadic poetics” (Piotr Gwiazda in Jacket 2).

The literary scholar, translator, and poet Piotr Gwiazda wrote a very thoughtful review of my nomadic surrealist work, especially Play Yr Kardz Right.

Also, there is a nice pic of Desperate Literature bookshop. Madrid’s answer to Shakespeare and Company in Paris and where Play Yr Kardz Right was launched.  

The review of my work, entitled”Nomad Life,” is available over here at

Jacket 2.

Marcus Slease Interview at The Volta




Poems written while living in South Korea. Or shortly after. Or much later. But inspired or recollected in tranquility, or not, a few years later. In either case, these are my nomadic surrealist poems from South Korea. They are called Mu (dream) so (window). Available from Poor Claudia (from Portland, OR). Clark Coolidge and Philip Whalen were my spirit guides.


The book is available from Poor Claudia over here:

from Valencia to Katowice

In old stomping grounds of Katowice, Poland after 10 days in Spain. Valencia, Barcelona, Alicante. I will never visit Alicante again. It was a wasteland of thousands upon thousands of tourists, bright lights, consuming frenzy, over priced bottles of water. Everyone looking for a quick Euro. Lots of ripping off. Ripping off might be ok if I had extra dough to rip off and the other folks needed it more. Whatever. The game is rigged from the beginning. What is the game? Capitalism? I am not sure I know what that word means exactly. But yeah. Competition. Keeping power in the hands of the few while the rest of us lose a lot of our humantity in slaving away in cubicles and then fighting each other for the scraps from the master’s table etc etc.

Alas, I am in Katowice. Things are nice and slow here. Simplier. At least when visiting and staying in the home of a nice family. It was different living here with sometimes no friends or internet or anyone to talk to and feeling like everything was sinister after getting beat up by a Russian mafia man at the entrance to a place called Spies.

I will never visit Spies again.

Tonight I am going to Kato. Kato is a place to hang. A pub. Meeting two old friends from 4 (maybe 5) years ago.

Still processing Spain. Always wondered about Spain. I need to see more of the other parts of Spain. Maybe Granada.

Valencia rocked my socks. A lot. The hostel in Valencia is called Low Cost Valencia and it rocked my socks. Best hostel I ever stayed in. Met lots of fellow travelers there. Went to uni area with some of the fellow travelers one night. Sat down at 1 AM until 6AM in a big circle while fellas came by and sold us two beers for one euro. It was a nice circle. It was nice bud too. There were anarchists and communists and dog lovers and old time punks. Serious punks. Some good street art.

Ever word I type on this Polish keyboard is highlighted in red because I am typing in English. It is hard to see if I am mispelling. Mis spelling. HA! Drinking Turkish coffee in a place called Manhattan Estate in Katowice. It is not Manhattan. It is maybe Queens. It is not Brooklyn. It is a tight estate. It best to hang with the locals when you come to the estate. I like this estate. It feels sort of like a second home.

Time for a smoke on the balcony of the estate. The temperature dropped yesterday from almost 40 degrees celcius in Spain to 20 degrees celicius in Katowice Poland. That’s a drop from about 102 degrees F to 60 degrees F.  And some cold rain in Poland.

The sun is rumored to return by the end of the week. 

christmas day 2011

Spicy frozen pizza for Christmas dinner. A 4AM taxi pickup to Heathrow on Boxing Day. London-Paris-Salt Lake City. Drinking Melissa Tea. It was my favourite tea when I lived in Poland. I have finished The Fertility Show (formally Nerve Movie). Sent it off to a publisher or two. Will have to wait a few months.

The Fertility Show takes it cue from Phillip Whalen’s idea of a nerve movie and Bernadette Mayer (esp Midwinters Day). Written during my daily 3 hour commute on the London underground. It is a poetics of everything. Inside and outside. Biographical, narrative, expansive poetics, compact lyrics, NY School send offs, homophonic translations of Polish and German from overheard conversations on the Piccadilly Line etc. etc.

A poetics that attempts to narrow the gap between art and life. I don’t see any other point.

Another Godzenie (with many many more strategies, modes, attempts to reconcile). A practice in mindfulness.

The poems are written on the tube in London but “take place” in Poland, Turkey, London, Milton Keynes, Las Vegas, North Carolina, Bellingham/Seattle.

A continuous nerve movie.

The other manuscript Smashing Time is also finished.

Now I will continue part two of a manuscript I started last time I was in America. It is called Spanish Fork.

My poetics is a travel poetics. But not in any narrow sense of the genre of travel writing. Orally based But not bardic.

It is also a kind of surrealism.

Let’s call my life project a nomadic surrealism. If it has to be called something that is maybe the closest. There are of course various other elements.

It lives much more off the page than on (methinks). The rhythm of everyday speech is very central.

hm . . . . and the slippery mind . . . quicksilver . . .

I dabbled heavily in flarf in 2004. I dabbled heavily in conceptual poetics as well. Surrealism and political poetry were the entry points into writing poetry.

Now it is many many things. But mindfulness is especially central. And an expansive (rather than constricted) sense of the self and the world.

Hello Tiny Bird Brain launch


hello tiny bird brain

Poetry at the Soho Curzon
Wednesday August 31st 2011~ 7pm ~ Entrance free
Marcus Slease launches ‘hello tiny bird brain’
Wayne Clements launches ‘western philosophy’
collections published by Knives forks & Spoons press
also readings by
Tim Atkins – Elizabeth Guthrie- Michael Zand
Linus Slug – Patrick Coyle & SJ Fowler

the Soho Curzon cinema, Mezzanine bar
99 Shaftesbury Avenue London W1D 5DY 0871 703 3988

heading into 2009

A need for order drives me to write. A need to map to frame to make the hidden manifest. To give flesh. The body manifest. To tap into my others. To become aware of how I am languaged. To dialogue with language itself.

I moved away from specialized theory driven discourses because I felt it closed down this dialogue. The specialized language said keep out! Said define yr turf.

I am a generalist.

I do not believe all complex specialized discourse is suspect. Or inauthentic. But I also believe simplified diction can be equally complex.

I admire the sprezzatura of many New York school poets, especially Ted Berrgan and Anselm Berrigan. I also admire the sound based poetics of Geraldine Monk and Maggie O Sullivan. The sentence based poetics of Ron Silliman and Rosmarie Waldrop are also fascinating (for different reasons). Poetry as unlocking the energies of the unconscious appeals to me greatly. As does the humor and irony of combining some of the concerns of so-called Language Poetry with NY school wit (such as Rod Smith). Lately I am very interested in the poetics of place. This is very complex. Godzenie is concerned with many things, including place. The self as expansive. Gaps compel me as well. The gaps in Tim Atkins Horace and Folklore (as well as his use of creative translation). Sean Bonney’s combining of visual and performance poetics is fascinating (as well as his creative translation of Baudelaire).

There are so many exciting poetries alive today. It is sad that so much boring, mediocre, well-crafted poetry seems to get funding and recognition. But of course it makes sense. It is safe. In America safe is good. In England too. And even the “unsafe” is quickly gentrified. Take for example Brick Lane in East London. Fashion centre of the so called counter culture. Safe. High property values. Art moves on.

Alas, there is so much to read and experience and write and so little time.

I still wonder about Jack Spicer’s idea of community. It seems, overall, like the best model for innovative arts (music, poetry, visual arts). Of course there are great and interesting poets who publish with mainstream presses (Alice Notley being the prime example), but that is rare. Does publishing with Penguin really gives her any more readers than if she published with a smaller independent press? I am not sure having the most possible readers is the goal? A goal? What is a reader anyway?

A community is complex as well. There are plenty of MFA communities and academic communities. But I am interested in communities outside those frameworks.

There are at least four or five stellar reading series in London with good communities. Openned Reading series having the most energy and potential. Poem Klatch meetings to kick it all into high gear (I hope they continue).

My only real complaint about my new life in London is the hours of my job. I get enough to survive month to month but have to work mornings and evenings with a few hours free in the afternoon. I cannot attend hardly any readings unless I call in sick. I hope I can find a way around this next year. New job or a way to change my evening hours. Evening hours are the bread and butter of teaching EFL (ESL) and ESOL. Most of the students are working adults.

Ok. enough for now.

I am going to continue watching the last season of Sopranos. Perhaps try to add a poem centred around the setting of Sopranos to the new manuscript Placebo.

I hope for clear thinking and writing (without sacrificing complexity).

Clean cuts in!