Excerpt for Cable-Knit Sweater by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

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Cable-Knit Sweater

Published by Steve Arviso at Smashwords

Copyright 2018 Steve Arviso

Smashwords Edition, License Notes

This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your favorite ebook retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

For Adena, always knitting.


George Carlin once said, “We think in language. The quality of our thoughts and ideas can only be as good as the quality of our language.”

I’ve spent the better part of the past five hours writing and re-writing this foreword, desperately scrambling to find the words to express my vague idea of what a foreword is supposed to be. But the honest truth is that I accidentally wrote my first poem in thirteen years, #Heatwave, due to a combination of depression, marijuana, and a heatwave that royally kicked my ass.

And while there’s definitely a strange, if rather wordy story to tell about how Rage Against the Machine, college, professional wrestling, stand-up comedy, a punk rock bar, and decades worth of emotional trauma and baggage ultimately got me to this point. While I certainly tried to write (and re-write) an abridged version of that story for this foreword, it doesn’t matter.

What does matter, however, is that after thirty-three years of struggling. I finally have a way to express all of the dark, wholly fucked up thoughts and feelings in my head. Sometimes I express this by going on stage and doing what I think is stand-up comedy. More times, I tweet. But then there are apparently times when I inadvertently create my first poetry collection.

I’m not a well man. Clearly. But focusing on the quality of my language, on the purpose and direction of it, has made all the difference.

(Whether or not it’s been for the better is entirely up for debate.)

Steve Arviso


I often worry death

is this dark, smothering thing.

Feeling your way through

dense, physical warmth.

A cool pocket of air waiting

at an end that never comes.

It’s warm tonight.


If what you’re sellin’ is a story

bout how the me inside of me

is the best of me,

not the me that others see,

then tell me

how’s it imperative

that your narrative

is also declarative

that the worst of a different collective

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