Doug Lang

Two Sonnets

Volume 16:1, Winter 2015
The Sonnet Issue

Ouagadougou Sonnet

A blouse is worn with a Crackberry. The wearing of ultra-trendy
Glasses is not cool in the veal-fattening pen.
Bentham’s utilitarian air family covers the bad infinitive.
Throwing money around like Paris Hilton all Christmas tricked-out
I’ve been doing a lot of existential Rockefeller wanking,
Na na na na, na na na na, hey, hey, hey, goodbye!
Devolving into preachy, joyless, overdetermined, unhinged,
Habitually narrowed ways, we have found peace
In our bungalow of being, a line of U-hauls abandoned on a hot
August afternoon with Hummers manning up, you puke.
At the hold ‘em tables, the ineffable palette unravels
Its miserable inevitabilities, while Bill Knott
Models a zombie attach, and you walk in on a phallic
Hunch, as Orwell put it. Go friend yourself


“Unheard” melodies endure

For Arthur and Bernard

Admit impediments an ever-fixèd mark
To the edge of error compass come love
Is time’s fool never shaken out even
Brief hours and weeks within his unknown

Or bends on tempests OK I guess whatever
Maybe I love a new American language
Koji Asano’s Quoted Landscape seems to be
Only the sound of a microphone dragged

Over land you can train your thoughts to be
Negative regarding Leonardo diCaprio
Cesare Pavese loved Constance Dowling
Drinking in a bar in America a spoon a chair

A piece of bread a pair of shoes disputed loved
Ignored worn out by people in Godard’s


Doug Lang is from Swansea in Wales. He came to Washington in 1973, the year that his novel, Freaks, was published by New English Library. He ran a bi-weekly reading series at Folio Books on P Street (where Second Story Books is now located) from January 1976 to June 1978. He recently retired after teaching Writing at the Corcoran College of Art and Design for 37 years. His most recent book is dérangé, published by Primary Writing in DC in 2013. In the Works, Selected Poems 1973-2013 will be published by Edge Books in DC later this year.