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Attendance is documentary poetry by Rocío Carlos and Rachel McLeod Kaminer, who are collaborating on a book length manuscript for the duration of one year.

As we stand in relation to plants and animals—and one another—we are not exempt, but alive as creatures in and of the world. Taking attendance, and attending, alters* our writing, bodies; places—city, land, wilderness; times—past, present, future…

*fucks up / fucks with / plant sex

Previous: JanuaryFebruaryMarchApril, May, June, July




First harvest. The Meyer lemons. Instructions: squeeze entire lemon into glass of water. Drink nothing until this. Put on gloves and wade into the thorny thicket with bare legs. Tug gently the stem; they are all ready to come. Notice the absence of the moon flower.

First harvest part 2: the lavender. Long stems from ferned leaves. Little scallops, eyelet, lace. Press the fluted blooms, wet as eyes. Enough to remind you of me. You are always so far away.

The memory of wheat fields

A new moon, a lion somewhere.

What you remember on a Wednesday is the sacrifice. A mature female, you enter that place/ wet as eyes/you lose your armor, drunk with flesh, you leave wings, antennae. Surrogate, you say. Take this body and eat it. You leave behind a brood of daughters. They will die this way too.

(you eat fig after fig and weep)

Mornings, the Morse code, the raven clicking.

Intend to write about death. Instead, remember it and receive wave after wave of it. The shudder and the weightlessness, the weight that is left after. Pall bearer/ mourner you witness and labor (and here is a document of death).

Bury me at__________.

Rachel’s I want to get fucked up and I do.

Luxardo cherries: The period that doesn’t come. That kind of absence.

The sun set on you/ on the roof. A couple taking photographs. Sirens on 7th and maple. Planes pass over. The craft depot where your mother bought lace.


The morning reeks of lavender. The mystery peach jojo found- you can’t find it again. The pears are falling off the tree. A brutal negligence. The grapes—I was waiting for them to be ready. Instead I let them shrivel up on the vine. (Yellowjacket’s frenetic hover.)

A summer approaching/a summer in rear view

Eva’s: wander with your second whiskey and touch leaves: That aloe with the yellow borders. climbing rose sunset color. pink tinged rose. some thorny some not as thorny. shiny avocado. it gets wetter in Tucson. how you have to think in Spanish to write it. the line. want to crush the leaves. the apricot. green. the soft spots in the soil. the banana? the hibiscus. incognito camellia. the soft purple blooms. the fig. a hidden guava. membrillo/ quince.

Again trim the plumbago. The pile of sticky blue blossoms proto-carnivorous. (You think of trapping things with your body and then eating them.)

What big eyes you have someone says. You let the answer hang in the air between you.

Somewhere, candles. Somewhere.

The tower of Babel is where I met you. There was a party. And you said the plainest thing I ever heard in the only language we had in common.

Cover/ below in the canyon. The body is the cover.

In your mouth the name of god a tongue you never learned you are spoken to and do not speak except to say this way or that (we met at the tower of Babel).

(mid august)

The warm night under the magnolia under the magnolia

What full moons bring: hummingbird/ your flutter. Prostaglandins: here comes agony.


Shoot me, she says, if I ever make anything that looks like it was made by a woman. The coy eye and wall of no. and then the hedge in front of the house is gone and then it was Friday.

A paper crown and the invitation into a girl’s room. /You remember those days, pink everywhere/ a wall of pink and then the pink walls./Is this where you remind the reader: it was only a movie/I was so young then.

And the can’t get up because there are wolves/ in the snow and they are here for blood./ And there is blood.


A Monday / his yellow tropical building. You walked to the Raymond and it’s closed. You walk down glenarm under the myrtles. You make a plan for plants. You go to the bad place to retrieve the good things. A tense guard lets us through, locks the door behind us and doesn’t say goodbye.

Tuesday: again to the dark place and then up the streets with the fine homes. Dusky workers part when you greet then/ a pale child watched from a window, her mouth on a straw. Aloe, salvia, echeveria. Crocodile tears. Under the magnolia- nail varnish

And then to the place of red light. Lanterns are like figs, I think. You stand together. When you read, you are speaking in an empty room.

Closing down the city for the night—did you say that to me? From another place. Did I hear that or read it?


The ace theater/the church of it/ the lights. And walking downtown as a pack. Little wolves all of us, with quick steps (from my mouth to yours/ just like a spark)

And always the train/ the sound of the summer leaving on a train




In Sonora (what grows):
the mother mountain range/ pearl of occident
the lazy tongue saying señora,
the xeric, the halophile. You learn to love on so little.
You mistake the rain for weeping.


You are a pearl, rose. No you are a grain of salt. No you are a coffee blossom. No you are a prickly pear. No you are an orange blossom. No you are a rose.


what if not blood

Again trim the plumbago (this is not without its consequences)
blue flowers as net, as fiery arrows
hungry, the blossoms slip into your shirt and hair.
Proto-carnivorous/think of trapping things with your body
and then eating them.
Progesterone—a fly paper to catch the Easter the thickening thicker thickest
What big eyes you have someone says/ you let the answer hang in the air between you.
Somewhere, candles. Somewhere.
Cover/ below in the canyon. The body is the cover.
hummingbird/ your flutter. Prostaglandins: here comes agony.

What words are: make small things.
As if we didn’t know how to say: we never knew.






…August what?
baby peacocks and parents
littlest birds in dirt yards
orange feet palms
flocks with space differences
with a gray white amongst gray grays

Not to breathe
Not to attend to time
Not sunshine, light, sunny out,
(is attending to time necessary to attend?)

On the roof over the bamboo thicket
(thinning thicket)
no birds then loud sudden birds before sun, dense noise from small bodies,
and then cooper’s hawk (sharp-shinned hawk?) gristly and unkempt
or juvenile and molting into sheen, it lands on the roof opposite me,
lower and close to the bamboo birds
as if a routine stop and then to hunt swoop, half a dive, the smooth down and across curving entry into the bamboo—then—no change (charge) in sound, neither tenor nor timbre nor pitch nor density. Death
and a meal
or not death?

18 August
…Datura open in the morning finally closes in the heat of the day
It was wrong before to see it open and wilting in the just after noon
It’s right to see it strong vertical and waiting for long low rays
The datura must spread with night wings, moths, bats and birds

…Red-tailed hawk, red-tailed hawk; what is sentry?

Sleek crow sleek crow rough raven sleek raven. Crows so small now.



untitled 8

fucking, and wanting narration
not wanting talk promises I can’t keep
with you just say
say what is right now happening
with prepositions


untitled 11

from August letters [backwards abecedarians]
wild, wilder, at all
T for tar hard in the palm of your hand, Theandrew—swollen; a solar; sugar-anger
for prayer, for papers at night
for license and registration
for killed
for hit
for fuck
for ether
for bathe—for after


untitled 18

waiting for long low rays
no space, no ritual anywhere
but attendance
and more, its absence

What are you looking for?