30 Under 30 5/30: Sam Sax
when you kiss me
i am reduced to my most. basic. elements
several buckets of water
a trash bag of carbon
a shot glass packed with salt
i become the empty space between all this matter
-from the handsome phalangesist’s lament
I like to imagine a young Sam Sax playing in the mud, finding all kinds of hidden dangers lurking in the wet soot and making them his tools. Covered in earth, I see the young Sam building a house of needles, a hot air balloon with used condoms, a prince out of brown glass. By a young Sam, I mean the Sam that exist in this day, I mean the kid in him that has so much fun being dirty. Sam is dirty. A bad boy. A naughty tongue in the dark. He work leaves you wet with your own humanity, wading through a valley of your own spit and whatever other substances make you cringe just as much as they make you alive. Sam is soft in his general ratchetness. Yes, I said ratchetness. His work does not shy away from the crude or the gross, and it handles such in a masterful manner, often tender and always with teeth, echoing the voices of D. A. Powell and Ginsberg. Sam will indeed make you howl. And how could we not? In his readings & his workshops, Sam is so insanely sweet and enduring, he pulls you into his lair and doesn’t let you out without leaving smiling & damp. Sam is the temple for those of us who worship, and I’m not necessarily talking about any one God or any God at all. Sam praises the small and smudged lights of the world, leaving no thing unworthy of it’s name, and in that murky, holy testimony, Sam Sax proves himself more than worthy of his own.
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