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Like a crazed killer clown, whether we are thrilled, horrified, shocked, or angered (or all of these) by Donald Trump, we cannot claim to be rid of him just yet. He bestrides the world stage like a silverback gorilla (according to one British thug), or a bad analogy, but he is there, a figure, no longer of fun, but grave concern.

There has long been a history of misogynistic behaviour in American gangster culture - one thinks of the grapefruit in the face in The Public Enemy, or Sinatra throwing a woman out of his hotel room and later commenting he didn't realise there was a pool below to break her fall, or the polluted womb in Pacino's Scarface... and of course, some gangsta rap is also sexist.  American culture has a difficult way with handling the combined aspects of male power, and male privilege, that, especially in heteronormative capitalist enclaves, where money/pussy both become grabbable, reified objects and objectives (The Wolf of Wall Street for instance), an ugly fusion emerges - a fascistic sexually-violent rhetoric of dominance, which is also an ideology of rapine acquisition.

Trump is the zenith of this type of American male. His troublingly bottled-up pacing, and looming presence, in the recent debate against his competitor, a woman, was amplified by exceptionally punitive language - arguably the most verbally bullying ever heard in American politics - she was a devil, had hate in her heart, and should be locked up. It was a display of pure Benito/Adolf style machismo - weird but undoubtedly alpha male - a brooding sense that real bones could break at any time. For Trump, history is a fist forever hitting a woman.

But there is more.  There are ALLEGED rumours of children, hired as sex workers, being bound and raped in awful billionaire orgies. America is the king of porn, the maker of more false sexual fantasies than any other; American popular culture - which we all adore like junkies love the poppy - is also our wounding vice and enemy friend; our fatal flaw is Netflix, box sets, the TV is good now story we tell ourselves - yes, and so is the Lotos.

Trump is the apex of what is no longer charming; he is the unacceptable face of male sexual-capitalist fantasy - the creepy-Hefner playboy - the 50 Shades billionaire - who hates and dominates women, the weak, minorities, foreigners, anyone who is not, in effect, a big white male like himself.

Trump has long been accused of being a narcissist - a rather tame accusation, actually. We are all narcissists in the Selfie age. He is worse.  He is a dangerous male.  He is armed with money, a sex drive, and a will to power second to none. He advocates violence.  He thrives on chaos, then pays lip service to law and order. He is the sexual predator who is also the police chief, the commandant, the movie star, the TV actor, the singer, the congressman, the doctor, the judge, the magistrate, the priest, the fireman - he is the man at the heart of the sex hospital, locking up and then abusing the victims at will.  He makes the laws, he abuses the laws - and all who would fall foul of his desires, which are total and fierce.
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According to the latest CBS, ABC, etc, polls, Clinton is still likely to beat Trump - by percentile odds of 66% to 33% and change. But the current popular vote is much closer, probably tied with the error of margin, around 44% each. Trump has to win more key battleground states to win, and may not - but he is ahead in Florida...

We will all know, in a week, whether we live in a world gone madder, or just relatively mad.

While it seems likely calmer heads will prevail, the recent Brexit win shows that polls can mislead, especially when one of the options is considered a bit embarrassing, rude or even racist - and Trump qualifies for these, at least.

If 42-45% of Americans admit they would vote for Trump, what does that say about the ones not so vocal? For surely, they must be there, as well. Some of the undecided will slide, and more likely they will slide to the wilder and more exciting fringe candidate. As may the libertarians.

Eyewear predicts that Trump will just about manage to win th…


Announcing the Shortlist for the 2016 Sexton PrizeSeptember 13, 2016 / By Kelly Davio
Eyewear Publishing is pleased to announce the shortlist for the 2016 Sexton Prize. The finalists are, in no particular order, as follows:

HISTORY OF GONE, Lynn Schmeidler
SEVERE CLEAR, Maya Catherine Popa
SIT IN THE DARK WITH ME, Jesse Lee Kercheval

The shortlist was selected by Eyewear’s Director Todd Swift with Senior Editor Kelly Davio. Don Share of Poetry Magazine will select the winning manuscript, which will be released at the 2017 AWP conference in Washington, D.C. The winner will be announced in October. 
Congratulations to our finalists!