Sound of Metal Mad Libs

By Fan Wu

In this poem, I echo Riz Ahmed’s new relationship with silence & noise in Sound of Metal in the form of Mad Libs, hollowing out my “original” poem so you can recreate it, rebuild its world as Riz must do. Play alone or with a friend. Then you can read my version and Lina’s and Sennah’s below. Send me your mad libs, I’d love to see your outcomes: fanwu4u@gmail.com & tag In The Mood Magazine on Twitter or Instagram.
xxo

[ANIMAL] [BODY PART], [ADJECTIVE] [BODY PART], [DESCRIPTION OF A SOUND]
Dark candy of the [NOUN] when [ABSTRACT NOUN] [ACTION VERB] you up,
[ADJ] & [ADJ] from being [PASSIVE VERB] at the back of the [BODY PART]. For so
many [ADJ] [TEMPORAL NOUN], where the [PLURAL NOUN] do in the [PLACE]
what [NOUN] [ACTIVE VERB] back,
its [ADJ] [BODY ORGAN], [ADJ] [BODY ORGAN]. What it was to want it
to be the same, to [VERB] out [NOUN]: that [ADJ] [NOUN].
Since I was a child I [VERB] masculinity as a [ADJ] [EMOTION],
a thing that ought to [VERB] the men it [VERB] together.
[HYPERSPECIFIC DESCRIPTION OF A SOUND],
children grind teeth in the flip of dreams,
[HYPERSPECIFIC DESCRIPTION OF A SOUND].

A [NOUN] of [NOUN] floods past as you [VERB] through it
with [NOUN] close to the [BODY PART]
to come out [ING-FORM VERB]:
[HYPERSPECIFIC DESCRIPTION OF A SOUND],
[HYPERSPECIFIC DESCRIPTION OF A SOUND],
[HYPERSPECIFIC DESCRIPTION OF A SOUND].
[SENTENCE THAT 
DEFINES “LISTENING.”]
[DESSERT] [VERB] and [OPPOSITE OF LAST VERB]
in your [BODY PART]. [FINALLY, FREE ASSOCIATE
A MORAL
TO YOUR POEM].







Bunny eyes, supple hands, wind moves through birch.
Dark candy of the mind when near-zero sews you up,
sour & mottled from being held at the back of the throat. For so
many dank decades, where the boys do in the grove
what road bent back,
its twisted spine, scooped-out muscle. What it was to want it
to be the same, to blot out weakness: that old refrain.
Since I was a child I remember masculinity as a paralytic tenderness,
a thing that ought to break the men it bound together.
A bicycle drags a flat behind it,
children grind teeth in the flip of dreams,
rain apart from weather.

A history of dust floods past as you plunge through it
with chaos close to the hip
to come out swinging:
laughter that bursts the bitter seed,
sex as a concession,
hooligan heartbeat at the very center

of existence.
Listening has nothing to do with sound but is
a mode of attention we lean into, with all the corners
of a body bent over.
Beignet wadded and unwadded
in your fist. The sky’s flaking over Paris
into static or silence and every other so-called angel knows
rage or disposes of it.

— Fan Wu







lion ear, run foot, caw
Dark candy of the mouse when idea slice you up,
wave & kick from being stand at the back of the chin. For so
many pleasurable clock, where the bees do in the plaza
what giggle roll back,
its literally liver, joined stomach. What it was to want it
to be the same, to spit out cup: that trying egg.
Since I was a child I thrash masculinity as a blessed happiness,
a thing that ought to slay the men it meshed together.
roar,
sputter,
clack.

A dream of truck floods past as you sneak through it
with keyboard close to the finger
to come out making:
trickle,
putter,
tink.

Leaning in to tune in.
sundae
shutdown and startup
in your throat.

Lina Wu







Hyena throat, sleek wrist, piercing
Dark candy of the orchid when glass dreams twitch you up,
Rough & unreal from being sighed at the back of the jaw. For so
many tense days, where the teeth do in the ocean
what yolk slithers back,
its sinful skin, sick heart. What it was to want it
to be the same, to leap out a mountain: that inventive petal.
Since I was a child I cycle masculinity as a petty lust,
a thing that ought to skip the men it shakes together.
Your cat laps at milk in the dark,
children grind teeth in the flip of dreams,
cardboard rips slowly.

A cliff of sand floods past as you pinch through it
with a bouquet close to the kneecap
to come out begging:
Your lover’s footsteps on the front porch,
clangy dial-up internet sounds,
clearing your throat of phlegm.
Not spending time thinking
only of what you’ll say next
.
Strawberries and cream cling and detach
in your neck. It’s all there already and
ready for you when you’re
ready.

Sennah Yee

Fan Wu who, unlike flower or saint, cannot complete his purpose.