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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, PAY WHAT YOU WANT:

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
December 2, 2022 / barton smock

needles and land

ocean I die in a wave as a thought in a horse

sleep is the itch 
death has 
for god

her bird
watcher skin
December 1, 2022 / barton smock

aparture, last

The forgetful shadow of Ohio roadkill

The footprint’s lost scene from the snowed-in movie of your mother’s life

The crushed swimmer at the red typewriter

December 1, 2022 / barton smock

aparture xxi (for damien jurado

The year-long field

The eye’s 
blank acre

A stretcher

most random 

The baby that crawls into its own stomach 
beneath an icicle

A sleep that aches
from dissolving
November 30, 2022 / barton smock

aparture xx

For three years, the baby doesn’t cry. We hold two funerals for the same dog and throw a birthday party for a nosebleed. We each lose a car on the ice. We buy fish food for friends who don't have fish and it makes them miss each other. We eat in front of the baby. I don’t think we can stop. Our friends ask the year. God hears nothing but us.
November 30, 2022 / barton smock

and star

a fish named tooth decay

a spiderweb 
in a pill
November 30, 2022 / barton smock

untitled, aside

Dear you, I am at a word for loss. My brother is alive and shows me where the bullet

hit another
bullet. I am poor. They talk about me

like I’m here.
November 30, 2022 / barton smock


The first fruit to be forbidden was made in a lab by two children who’d died in a treehouse from not knowing when to eat.

The angel
November 30, 2022 / barton smock

aparture xix

Sound is echo’s silent alarm. I close my mouth underwater and yours opens in Ohio. 


a deer. I want my children to be alive all the time.
November 29, 2022 / barton smock

( some, recent, things


My good son Noah M Smock does his own thing and did three shirt designs incorporating lines from my poems...gods, brothers, bones, etc... ck out his TEEPUBLIC account if interested. If you send a purchase receipt to me at, I'll send you a book of mine.

Also, I set up a LINKTREE account if interested.

Lastly, my most recent book is blood to bathe us in its blue past, May 2022 at 217 pages.
Privately self-published and is pay what you want.

can be purchased via paypal (
or Venmo: @Barton-Smock-2
or CashApp: $BartonSmock

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November 25, 2022 / barton smock

( note, not, note

We hear from grief that loss feels left out. Why write. Because it's hard to surprise god and even harder to avoid. Maybe. Proximity keeps eating the distance that keeps my mouth open. I am grateful. For those who believe the poor exist outside of being made. For those who believe that one can get sick and not know it and so replace their knowing with another's. For writing and for not writing. For my children who leave and come back and stay and drift off. For my brothers who are each disappearing into the darkroom to fully develop our vanishings. For my father who sends me photos of things that happened and teaches me to change how I remember. For my mother who goes from place to place understanding the needs of people who have no person. For Gen who leaves nothing and no one out and carries the near and the far to the same secret place where passwords have been put to sleep. I have some pictures. You've probably seen them. Pretend they're there.