Born of a rigorous criticism of the toxicity of the economic system, this collection of experimental, socially conscious poetry reflects a world in crisis. It mobilizes scenes of struggle and instances of solidarity, from Occupy to Mexico’s drug war, from Cairo to Athens. Linguistically daring, full of exigency, these poems are as damaged as life, still dirty.
Praise for Still Dirty:
"Even as capitalist culture's reality-screens are flickering and frying out, David Lau's poems offer image-captures of something they can't contain. Lau's poetic mixology surges and beats with the rhythms of resistance, creating vortexts that serve as maps of future victories, verbal harbingers of a utopia dirty enough to come." — Andrew Joron, author of Trance Archives
"David Lau’s sizzling new collection confronts the key lyric dilemma of the first quintile of the 21st century: namely, how get the lyric out of its delirious position on the cross of personal rabbit hole (vertical) and a-political theoretical equivocation (horizontal) while still, as he puts it, 'straight not giving a f-- - about normativity.' Radical and playful until one wonders which is which, part imagined and part documented to the same effect, Lau mobilizes a lyric insurrection via a trans-continental vernacular. ” — Ed Pavlic, author of Let's Let That Are Not Yet
"Lau’s poems take place at the periphery of consciousness; try to look directly at them, try to explain what they are saying, and they blink away. These are poems that exist in a fun house of connotation, poems that are simultaneously creative and destructive." — Dominic Luxford, The Believer
Back at the neon red debrief nobody said much.
“We crossed this Burmese river” or
“The Punjab is a land with five rivers.”
I drank from a glass of beer and remembered
the Alexander Kluge VHS
The Eiffel Tower, King Kong, and the White Woman.
The wind was blowing down trees;
at the port of Long Beach,
a Mitsubishi crane un-stacked
a glow-blue sheet of wind.
I’ve been rolling around with a bunch of Fleetwood Macks.
We are the crisis.
David Lau has been involved in the poetry, art, and activist communities of Los Angeles and the Bay Area for the past decade. He is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and editor of the journal Lana Turner. This is his second book after Virgil and the Mountain Cat: Poems (University of California Press, 2009).