Eleni Sikelianos is capable of great disorientations, which is a skill we need in a time of replica strip malls. “Words bird the zone” so we can fly around the different entrances of language when heated up and bent into new tools under Sikelianos’ pulse and pacing. Everyone has their “own inside feeling of of” so no small piece in the ensemble is taken for granted. There is no dry repetition only how to surprise functional or empty words like of, which leads to a great deal of expectation on the reader’s part for “old ideas to be transcendent.”
There is a strong desire in Eleni’s work to equalize what is disproportionate. The voices, spirits, and ghosts of the dead meet the living as force fields, as the title of Sikelianos’ most recent book, The Loving Detail of the Living and the Dead, promises. The result is a concoction: a mixed drink hangover free. “I’m sleeping and I’m dying.” The border is finely drawn, like liquid eyeliner. This is a place so vast even the digital can be beautiful.
A conspirator you will become in these liquid clocks. And Sikelianos’ gratitude is included. There is hypnosis involved in a future that does “backbends” towards you. And the discoveries arise like that of a secret object revealed in a pocket of pants stored away for a season.