Dennis Caswell

Kandinsky: Composition 8, 1923


An explosion in Stravinsky’s robot workshop:
now poor Igor will never complete
his troupe of clockwork dancers, which,
judging from this jagged blast
of armatures, sprockets, escapements and flanges,
would have looked less like metal humans
than graceful assemblies of drafting supplies:
jeté of dividers, pas de bourrée
of mechanical pencils and pantographs.
This watchmaker’s orgasm, this architectural plan
for the Church of Dissonant Space Flight,
these mad extrusions and stampings and lathe-spun
lenses perform the airborne metal music
of migrating mathematics, honking along the flyways
of a just-manufactured heaven, a heaven
where twentieth-century robots can dance,
can fly, can worship
the innards that make them tick.


Dennis Caswell lives outside Woodinville, Washington and works as a software engineer in the aviation industry. Before that, he designed and programmed computer games and educational software. His work has appeared in Floating Bridge Review, Crab Creek Review, Burnside Review, Vain, and assorted other journals and anthologies.


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