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  Rodrigo Toscano
Rodrigo Toscano is the author of To Leveling Swerve (2004), Platform (2003), The Disparities (2002), and Partisans (1999). He is also the artistic coordinator and writer for the Collapsible
Rodrigo Toscano
Poetics Theater (CPT). His poetics plays, polyvocalic pieces, masques, anti-masques, and radio plays have recently been performed at the Disney Redcat Theater in Los Angeles, Yockadot Poetics Theater Festival, New Langton Arts Space (San Francisco), Poet's Theater Jamboree 2007 (Directed by Stephanie Young), WPIX (FM), PS 1. Radio, KAOS Radio Olympia, KSW Vancouver, as well as in Teubingen, Germany. Toscano is originally from the Borderlands of California. He lives Brooklyn, and works at the Labor Institute in Manhattan.

"Swivillization and its bearings grinding—listen." This is la cumbre, el culmen de los cruzares, the heights of the crossing, not in borders, but in tongues, English for now . . . inclinado, torcido, bent in its desire to Level. "Into a language I don't speak alarms an attack" Who thought of, who pushed the tongue like a finger into the wound of this empire of fear, who? "QUICQUAM WHICHEVER LOCKED INTO A PATH OF CALVINIST SUPERSTITION LEADERS PRESSED FEARS ONTO FEARS" Feels not like "poetry" in the usual sense, but as thought form, moving across the page, a living thing, a word animus. Csar Vallejo said poetry did not change the world, only the human "heart." He probably meant "heart" in the Andean sense: sonqo, spirit and consciousness.
- Cecilia Vicua on To Leveling Swerve

Poetics Theater is a test of poetry. The Collapsible Poetics Theater is an all volunteer effort, one that assembles itself within a given 24 hour period of each performance. Each locale (with its resident poets, experienced actors, experienced non-actors) brings an entirely new set possibilities. It is reminiscent of Commedia Dell'Arte in its traveling, portable, rapid-set up qualities. To be sure, Poetics Theater fits into the poetry scene as a baby does in itchy burlap; it fits into the drama scene as does a little crown, little scepter, little gown, all neatly stored in a metal suitcase (quite literally!). The dings are just dings. The persistent question is: can the poem be tested any further?

from To Leveling Swerve

Rodrigo Toscano
Gotta love the tools; we seek breaks or voluminous strength from
such toils.

Lowdown people (we) do not ask when bitching a 180 turn.

The stately political beat, it will not want Holy Books, in the end,
desert mummeries.

Groove into the tools, we breaks or voluminous awareness in: Art.

From corn-shucking peasant to almost all of a burgher, spasm.

Almighty site pattern about the beastie wound.

If the collective guilt is adapted, almighty site pattern about the
beastie wound.


Ask the classy spread-out office exceller to post a padded sexy oval
shape into the discourse.

Done to the guild's obloquy, tomatoey squishy legacy, "saucy"

Put the McDonalds into it.

All 3,000,000 unassociated struggling gligs and glags.

For the Adornian leather pants don't fit so evenly snug no more.

For the Paulo Freirian playeras—at least three sizes, too billowy.


That lower-class seekers ply their thrusties and gyrationals against
their multiple-unit owning cousins: "poethics"

How we realized our beanies were backwards oddly worn, non-
abrogation of Social Contract—beanie forwards.

Mortality gets into some technical difficulties, but the you-move-I-
move meant—lives beyond you.

I mean to say, it is not alive "beyond you"—it is neediest breath, the

The most intimate-public impulses...consciousness toggling /
toggling consciousness.

The newest beanie flipped sideways—with abandon, the not back-to-
front historicity.

The without the beanie altogether.

The without the beanie...all together.

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