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The Reading Series: Dana Ward's "The Crisis of Infinite Worlds"

07/18/2012 10:46 am ET | Updated Sep 17, 2012

The Reading Series is a new feature spotlighting videos from contemporary poets.

Dana Ward's "The Crisis of Infinite Worlds" is based on the idea that talking about someone and what they do makes them more familiar to you. Ward takes us to an alternate universe where to quote from movies, graffiti, and the experience of walking through commercial stores is a way to relate back to the origin of our feelings, and is a trajectory towards the infinitely possible worlds our expressions can create.

He asks Krystal Cole if she's ever felt that "this is paradise / not for people / but paradise / regardless." Thus emphatically remarking that although a new universe could be created in response to this gesture, this epistle for a persona who may not be real, the pleasure is enough to count as paradise, even if it's not paradise in its most original state. That whatever was experienced while writing to Krystal is enough to live in, even if it's temporary. Andrew Marvel writes: "Two Paradises 'twere in one / To live in Paradise alone." But for Dana Ward, it's the experience of being outwardly solitary, of writing to someone whose identity you are unsure of, while transporting your discourse to a land that is paradise unknown.

Dana Ward is the author of This Can't Be Life (Edge Books). The Crisis of Infinite Worlds is forthcoming for Futurepoem Books, & another, as yet untitled work, is coming out from Flowers & Cream. He lives in Cincinnati, co-edits (with Paul Coors) Perfect Lovers Press, & hosts the Cy Press @ Thunder Sky Inc. reading series.