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October 15, 2019
On the highway, saw the eyes of a sheep staring through slats
of a trailer transport. Who?

I thought for both of us. The choices
I had; those it didn’t.
October 8, 2019
I wanted to take you out shoplifting
mascara, reenacting all the scenes from
Marie Antoinette. I wanted us to fall 
back repeatedly into a bed of extravagant
dresses, eat really good chocolates, listen
to even better music, smell really good.
Is that too literal?
October 1, 2019
The outer bark cleaved 
so as to summon
a slug, these oars 

paddling air 
opposite sun. 
Nocturnal 
September 17, 2019
Late flies large as nearly extinct black bees

burrow in wisteria

when the desert has all the carcasses
September 10, 2019
The dolphin appeared in a cloud of dust, a soft red bloom on the horizon that blossomed into a cyclone over the course of the day. Wade Walton spotted the arrival around noon from his perch at the motel’s front desk, where he briefly wondered if he might be seeing a mirage.
September 3, 2019
revived after stasis to regrow roots and ribcage of willowy human shape the child emerges lifespan long or short when starved phobias of insects and mean dogs invisible in the trees walk backwards
August 27, 2019
In the tender early silence of a day you imagine belongs to you 
already the contours of the night before forgotten and what that night told
when you went through the dark house 
marking disturbances of light
August 20, 2019
Today is an apparent day of shadows piercing timeworn walls, of melt & freeze & brutal disregard, of brutality in its frightened guise, of mastery in fear & fear in mastery, of fear in its brutal guise
August 13, 2019
   Tinfoil-hat alert: I asked God for more,
sharpening my quills and gathering reams of paper to write books
     as an antidote to all I was not!
August 6, 2019
After my grandma died, my uncle had their dog Lady euthanized. I’m not sure why. My grandfather went into assisted living. My uncle took over the farm. He rarely invited anybody over.
July 30, 2019
Sandy Szymanski was worried that she was turning into a duck, but the worst thing about her predicament by far was how nobody seemed to care. “Eh, I doubt it,” her landlord said when he came to inspect the transom window through which some hooligan had thrown, overnight, a bottle of Pabst Blue Ribbon.
July 23, 2019
From Dyeu Ary
Pour liquids over the body
Boil liquids into her body
into the silence she becomes
waif, monolith, endless roads
Cloud-gold-dust larger than earth
July 16, 2019
She wanders aimlessly through age, age
being a nutrient that washes from the cliff face
into the soil.

Absence a rhythm in the daily round, rows
carved into furrows in the ground or the folds
of the robe, not planted with seed.
July 9, 2019
He has already, over the course of months, designed his own sanctuary, his own adventure. It has yet to be built, but it will be an ordinary house, except for the cellar, where a secret tunnel leads far away into deep woods, to his real home, enormous and impregnable and peopled by machines to take care of all his needs.
July 2, 2019
We sipped a fumé blanc, much too good for us. Elsa, quite content with a weak strain of iced tea, happy to be here at all. We had not known from lively e-mails and upbeat telephone chats that her persistent cough had taken a turn to the prospect of dying.
June 25, 2019
In the language of carbon wealth I sang myself into shape. May the pieces fall in accordance with natural law, I thought, and the world will slide into place. Complicity was as capital in the vernacular of the times, so my counsel sold to blight-ridden conifers desperate to restart life.
June 18, 2019
After Giantess declared her love, and conditions were set by Moon—build me a silver body, attire me, hinder my roll through space to attach the silvery limbs
—the two outliers danced until lightfall, where, on Venus, each day is longer than an Earth’s year. And dance on and on they did.
June 11, 2019
“I wanted ours to be a perfect
union,” he tells us at the table in the back, candle out.

“I wanted every desire to be balanced, exactly,
by generosity. And stasis to be a form

of flight. But I was yammering
in my sleep.
June 4, 2019
After Rosmarie Waldrop
Sometimes I see a transparent profile, shadow-self with its thready tendrils turning to face the absence of a face framed by the window opposite. Selflessness is a complicated structure in that it doesn’t exist. The speaker ever-hovers just outside the door, listening. She went whichaway, grinding her teeth to shadow.
May 28, 2019
I have in common with old window glass
a pleasant warping
of whatever forces through

In this sickly light the defanged
dogs slurp their sludges. I intone as taught
“Here no mystery is”
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The Bard Fiction Prize and Los Angeles Times Book Prize winner reads from Maggie Brown & Others
Monday, October 28, 2019
6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Reem-Kayden Center Laszlo Z. Bito '60 Auditorium