the blocks

And things which are in you, the poem comes distorted through. Your tongue is exactly the kind of tongue you’re born with, and the source of energy, whatever it is, can take advantage of your tongue, can make it do things that you didn’t think it could–but your tongue will want to return to the same normal position of ordinary cleft palate speech of your own dialect, and this is the kind of thing you have to avoid. There are a great many things you can’t avoid. It’s impossible for the source of energy to come to you in Martian or North Korean or Tamil or any language you don’t have–or, at least, don’t have something of. It’s as if a Martian comes into a room with children’s blocks–with ABCDE, which are in English–and he tried to convey a message–this is the way the source of energy goes–but the blocks on the other hand are always resisting it.

(Jack Spicer quoted in “The Practice of Outside” by Robin Blaser, in The Collected Books of Jack Spicer)