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July 31, 2022 / barton smock

( reading ( blood to bathe us in its blue past ( & ) untouched in the capital of soon

so I did this really long rather awkward reading from my last two self-publications but I do mean what I say or at least what one can hear of it:

hard copies available:

untouched in the capital of soon, 187 pages
poems, Sept 2021
can be purchased via paypal (
or Venmo: @Barton-Smock-2
or CashApp: $BartonSmock

blood to bathe us in its blue past, 217 pages
poems new and selected, May 2022
can be purchased via paypal (
or Venmo: @Barton-Smock-2
or CashApp: $BartonSmock

August 23, 2021 / barton smock

Poem-A-Day at

I have all the words that have gone missing to say that I am thankful for being in the August 2021 run of Poem-A-Day at as guest edited by Kazim Ali

Read my poem here

about the poem:

“I can't speak for all fathers, but my own fathering is littered with necessary and fake finalities. As such, I wrote this poem by hand on a small piece of paper while worrying about the long and short lives of my children. In the spacing of the poem, I tried to honor the little room I'd given myself for its projected concerns.”
—Barton Smock
August 12, 2022 / barton smock


hospitals 1

( my son with his little sickness is a crow's throw from a comma in the ocean

( are you currently or have you ever been from the future

( this other time a rabbit jumps on top of the push mower
so I turn the mower off
and have a dream
the rabbit

( my sleep and my son's 
were forgotten 
for an hour
it was 
I'm sorry 
but it was
August 11, 2022 / barton smock

pre-order Blue, poems by Erin Wilson, from Circling Rivers

Pre-order Erin Wilson's Blue from Circling Rivers HERE

Lovely, lovely book. Had and still have some words for it, here:

August 9, 2022 / barton smock

vi. (response poems for Benjamin Niespodziany

The movie feels more alone than the movie it isn’t. One of us has been kissed on the stomach. Going outside confuses god.
August 8, 2022 / barton smock


house 6

I live in the loss of my non-existence, 

a noise has no birthday, 

and sleep is perfectly made
August 8, 2022 / barton smock

( on films, recent

Creatively and gloriously unreliable, Vincent Grashaw's difficult and restoring What Josiah Saw chooses how it begs and gets two-headed performances from all involved. Nick Stahl gives his ghost a ghost, Scott Haze retraces steps that didn't touch the earth, Robert Patrick closes every space in which he appears, and Jake Weber gets the story wrong with a menace that kills the right. But, damn, this is really Kelli Garner's movie. From the moment Garner's Mary puts the path in her path with the body language of anti-destination, the movie makes a scenic witness of its periphery and goes about vicariously burning itself beside the salvage of Garner's nervously resigned vision.


Talking itself into and out of the unanswered blue, All My Puny Sorrows guts both the nearby and the distant using the same hunger for recovery as bellied by any lost sister of loss. Alison Pill and Sarah Gadon glow wounded in performances that separately heal, and Mare Winningham keeps detail as something some god has locally misplaced. I was glad for all of its conversations and for its half open way of unburning books, for how Pill baptized the submerged, for how Gadon let others believe they’d invented the headlight, and also for how director Michael McGowan left often the camera alone to become its own silent letter.


We’re All Going To The World’s Fair has to it an unworried precision that had me thinking I might have forgotten to shut down, in another life, an electric toothbrush. If any pulse is taken, it’s the pulse of separation and director Jane Schoenbrun is songbook tender and secretly protective enough to hum the art of this film into the disconnected wrists of those whose online has no off. Schoenbrun and lead Anna Cobb make of knowing a current terror and no sky here falls that hasn’t been dropped. Cobb, with deadpan abstraction, gives a performance worth of sleep’s eternal jump-scare and works with the film outside of the film to put an end to vice-versa that we might more blankly keep those who are constantly notified away from those who appear by looking at the vanished.   
August 2, 2022 / barton smock


house 5

I read my writer and you read yours

a third
can switch the order 
of god and death
August 2, 2022 / barton smock


house 4

loneliness is the only type of loneliness that nobody talks about

let's say it's the day I don't always learn to bathe a mouth

a whole family chooses not to eat 
all the food 

the channel 
the one 
with one 
car accident

ghost goes from jesus to scarecrow and back
can't decide

is something still written on the inside 
of how I view 
my hand
July 22, 2022 / barton smock


house 3

whose childhood
was the longest
there is always
one friend
with a nosebleed
July 21, 2022 / barton smock


house 2

nothing is beautiful to God

do your parents
have private