Media Gallery

Through evocative linguistic athleticism and a constant questioning of the stability of language, David Lau lends a creative voice toward exposing the toxicity of global capitalism and crises in our economic system.

The following poems are selected from his lastest collection, Still Dirty from Commune Editions. David Lau is a lecturer at UC Santa Cruz and has maintained a notable presence in the art, poetry, and activist communities of the Bay Area and Los Angeles for the last decade. He is also an editor of the journal Lana Turner, a premier journal of contemporary literary theory.

Dominic Luxford of The Believer writes of Lau’s work, “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.”

This Thursday, September 15, come hear Lau read alongside Jennifer Hayashida, Tyehimba Jess, & Cheena Marie Lo at AAWW.


How to Win a Strike (The Phantom Menace)


The room looked like Tampa
in the pool with the blizzards when they
put the music on. No motions.
A tonic in page display tufts,
call me switch-foot, a check away from homeless.
You get there. Intentional.

We ate tacos people,
running like this drum kit

storms in and birds walkout—
cormorants, and the white wash storm-surge
caterpillars along in the wind-driven
terrestrial zag, mercury’s
wooded
and stochastic cladistics—
bird-human,
whale-bat—
of an

incomplete spectrum, vile, no food

binoculars in the sea bed


down by the flood
control channel

and freeway
overpass,
like a pongid
in the Morrissey wars.




Recycled, Lucky


We set up roadblocks with concrete fragments
and our dead.
We said every other thing in
the expressive aphasia of big capital,

that, “Look,
I have your película,
the surface
of the hard nut.

(Nomina sunt odiosa.) And because

Salome was the mental states of her conspecifics

the insignificance of most suicides
mouthed mountain-rose ice.

Later I logged off at SoundCloud.”


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David Lau is the author of Virgil and the Mountain Cat (UC Press, 2009). He is co-editor of Lana Turner: a Journal of Poetry and Opinion. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he teaches writing at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

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