Sugar, DS Maolalai

Craig Goodworth, 9 Korytos (logs in city square of Liptovský Mikuláš, Slovakia) 2015




white apartments
stacked on the river,
like ice
or block sugar
from a grey

toppling buildings;
such black
and perfect

DS Maolalai


Review by Massimo Fantuzzi

The issue of sugar in its triad of Monosaccharide-Disaccharide-Polysaccharide and their everyday-life counterparts – plenty to choose from – has never been more urgent than these days.

Numerous questions are raised in this granite poem which stands as an epitaph, unafraid of pointing its finger in accusation: questions about the impact that our lifestyle has on our surroundings and, ultimately, on ourselves. Bald images compiled with minimal expenditure of words reach us with journalistic clarity expressing a verdict that goes beyond the concepts of good or bad, taste or distaste: the feeling is one of arrearage and inconsequentiality, as the damage has already been done.

Hoisting our fair share of guilt and simply too late for questions of measurement, boundary, limits, respect or sustainability, all we are left to wonder with throbbing anxiety is: how much will it hurt when it happens? Because – make no mistake my friends – toppling buildings: the author could not be any clearer on the outcome: toppling buildings; this sugar-based sugar-coated global-village will fall and don’t expect a cloud of fairy dust made by the grounded pearls dug out from under our pillows when that happens.


Review by Jared Pearce

The opening image recalls sugar-cube structures built by young students as part of their social studies reports, perhaps indicating the terrific industry built up around sugar.  Then the scene changes from the (perhaps) political to the personal with the “grey / lip,” showing the consequences of both the political and personal devotion of sugar.  The pattern is repeated again in the second set, but the consequences are described in much more negative terms—and more negative because they’re final: the buildings are toppled, the teeth are destroyed.


Review by Alan Gold

Apartments line a river like teeth along the gum line, or, at the same time, blocks of sugar. And we all know what happens when you mix teeth with sugar. The sudden shift between the two stanzas, from cleanliness to urban decay, with no bridge, no process interposed, leaves us buzzing with thoughts about urban planning, the inevitability and the beauty of decay, and the nature of the sugar that rots our fine edifices. 



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