Online Exclusives

12.27.07
Three Stories
The old man made a list of things that would not notice his death. [...]
12.13.07
From The Reserve
If Bear had been a girl, Jordan would have named her Puma. Wolf he would have named Peregrine. He said he wanted his children to be inspired all their lives to live up to what they were called. [...]
12.06.07
Two Poems
long, jointed bones, floating like a bird’s, prehistoric, knuckling

in their brightness, as if to perform some magic trick, to pull 

a kerchief from the debut of darkness, I feel dangerous [...]
11.29.07
Acquiescence
Roving packs of five-year olds roam the overgrown lots by the abandoned steel mills. [...]
11.09.07
The Pool House
Every once in awhile, another ghost moves into the pool house. They like it there, curled up behind the floats and tucked into inner tubes, since it's January and nobody uses the pool house in January. [...]
11.02.07
From Sonnet 56
Sweet love, renew thy force, be it not said
Thy edge should blunter be than appetite [...]
10.25.07
Three Poems
Moon: what the earth does not know
Light: what the earth does not know
Light: what the moon does not know
Moon: the grasses!  [...]
10.18.07
Year of the Bird
On the seventh day of the seventh month, Golden Bird Chinese Food opens its doors [...]
10.11.07
Two Elegies
Saturday, a fawn wing sung of women and of woods:

“We heap the pearls, we loose the ground,

and some go godward with a rose.” [...]
10.04.07
Objects of the Visible Language
Do you believe in the once indivisibility of atoms?

The arranged ruins of planetary lights? [...]
09.27.07
The Other Walk
This morning, going against all convention, I turned right instead of left and took my circuit—one of my circuits—in reverse. [...]
09.13.07
Draft 85: Hard Copy
One nano-second later and
a snarl of light that crashed to the floor binds one 
to the terrors of historical time.  [...]
09.06.07
The Pool
And it’s not all of us who run, who surround, who slip in or charge or surge. [...]
08.30.07
From Wave Offering
Lovingkindness of Lovingkindness

Today is day one of the Omer
Beginning is an opening [...]
08.23.07
Two Poems
The rostrum is able to mail.
Malachy owns a keyshop. [...]
08.16.07
Three Poems
Comb the chrysalis from your beard to fasten the milkweed
Rather your eyes be matted with Queen Ann’s lace than pill blisters scatter the sink [...]
08.09.07
The Slide Turned on End
O’Hara claimed he glanced at a work of abstract art—a Kandinsky, he thinks—and was immediately struck by how similar it was to some of the rare amoebas he was working with at the time. [...]
08.02.07
Influenza, Mother of God
We ought to search for Lil when the woods have thinned for winter. Then, even in bitter light, the curve of her skull, phalanges, a tibia might be easier to see among the scatter of branches. [...]
07.26.07
Five Poems
Inside blaze      earthly figuration

the lover in pieces at the mouth [...]
07.19.07
Three Fictions
Perhaps three days’ journey south, southwest, across a salt desert leading to an ancient wood dense with black cypress and a strain of ivy so fierce its creeping roots are said to choke even the soil it feeds upon, lies Cieloso, city of floating men and women. [...]
07.12.07
Elegy for the Sentence
I remembered the sentence when I saw the old man and woman walking on the shore the man with a plank for a leg a war having kept the leg. [...]
07.05.07
Notebook A: Notes on Wakefulness and Being
The body resists its knowledge of oneness—as if to exist it must renounce that from which it was issued. [...]
06.21.07
An Interview
interview by Tayt Harlin
by David Markson
I had a great deal of trouble getting started. I don’t know whether I was afraid or just thought I was bullshitting the world and myself. [...]
06.14.07
Four Poems
The moon is the kind of birthplace who,
if in the process of blooming 
a fine son stopped pressing his shirts [...]
06.07.07
Four Poems
Hand on the wall my
time in turn to
mute—to form with 
rhythm: my whole [...]
05.31.07
Works
    place Pigalle night nine teen o five  [...]
05.23.07
A Hill in Spain
On our honeymoon, I caught a stomach bug in Spain and, for the long day leading up to Easter, for Easter itself, and for the day after it, I spent most of my time in the hotel bathroom [...]
05.16.07
Five Lyrics
The codes reawake
a lesser, nightly repeat [...]
05.09.07
Major Nixon
Rob Nixon, do you remember me? You invited me on base. You wanted to show off the cool splat ball setup and maybe trade notes on the missing. [...]
05.02.07
They Found the Claw and Hung from It Chimes
The Aztec baby came in on the back of the wolf.  [...]
04.25.07
The Devil, A Digression
The Devil has black tangled hair. He eats only the meat of dogs or goats. He is capable of showing you small examples of miracles. The Devil prefers the smell of violet. [...]
04.18.07
Work Song
It is an hour. One
of those hours.
The hours. Hour
after hour. Ours. [...]
04.11.07
Paul Klee
How to compose a question: To spell the word blue
in Paul Klee’s painting entitled Paul Klee’s The Color Blue [...]
04.04.07
The Other Borges: A Fiction
The encounter I will describe here occurred in the Buenos Aires mid-winter of 2004; it has taken me until now to muster the courage to recount it and to conclude, as the gentleman involved insisted, that it contains a story that must be told. [...]
03.28.07
Is It Twice as Big?
We’d just gotten up.
We’d washed our faces. 
Sky-blue mugs of coffee.  [...]
03.21.07
Two Poems
The water needs a forder. Otherwise there’s no cutting through to something other. Other than the water. [...]
03.14.07
A Map of Her Town
The knife recurs as a figure in certain rooms. Take the parlor, where the matron, aflame, parts the drapes—and the bedroom, where brown ants cover the haft. [...]
03.05.07
Three Poems
We need new ways of living
without resorting to crocodiles [...]
02.25.07
The Ones Who Came after the Ones Who Could Fly
My father, like every man of his generation in our country, never quite got over the loss of flight. [...]
02.19.07
An Interview
Well, I am not sure that it is actually a process of translation. I think that the same principles apply to both music and poetry and that ideally they are one art.  [...]
02.11.07
From The Woodblock Prints
“a swan and its reflection on the water’s black surface” [...]
01.28.07
The Coca-Cola Executive in the Zapatoca Outhouse
The Coca-Cola executive was kind to me, though everyone was being kind that summer. [...]
01.17.07
Three Poems
Round uneven sumptuous it heaves up its weight against
the pile of leaf and litter and farm trash [...]
01.08.07
Rothko Chapel Sequence
spaces 
farther off 
are spaces 
farther off  [...]

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In Print

Vol. 79
Onword
Fall 2022
Edited by Bradford Morrow

Online

January 25, 2023
The birth of color begins in the entanglement
of water. Color is the birth of light.

Low clouds morning visitation, the words are
forming separable from their origins. Stars

crease the heavens. I have been moving
into their stream, heavenly bodies, the architecture

loose and ungainly. I’m not one but two, the occupancy
of a system, here in the apparel of another’s

light, to come down these stairs, dawn
weighted with silver, a perimeter that hooks

sky, bleeds our nights into day. There is this
sanctuary, intricate respite, cut-out, here on the floor
January 18, 2023
A second-growth forest is not the same as a first, and a third is not the same as a second. Those old dying oak and chestnut trees saved a century ago from axe and saw to shade the grazing livestock are surrounded now by all the wrong progeny—birches and popple in one case, pine trees in the other. Absent a mature overstory’s broad canopy, the understory receives too much unfiltered light, and low thickets and dense copses of trees and shrubs all the same age spring up.
     In ancient times a carpet of fallen leaves and ferny ground cover was lit by long beams of sunlight descending from openings in the treetops as if from the clerestory windows of a great cathedral. Humans and other animals walked easily among the tall, straight trunks and had unobstructed views from glen to vernal pond and stream to the glacial moraine beyond. That was a forest, not a woods. But the forest was not replaced by itself. It was displaced and replaced by these woods, which is a different and lesser thing.
     My dog darted through the brush ahead of me, tracing the lingering spoor of a deer or bear or coyote, led by his nose instead of our man-made trail. And as I walked I remembered again a story from the village, part of which I saw, part of which I heard from witnesses, and part of which I imagined.
January 11, 2023
A brick-shaped piece of architectural rubbish. A brick of someone’s missing place. My brick, but only because I’ve taken it as my own, to collect, among my menageries, set alongside small shoes made of mottled glass and rusted railway spikes and silver-clad icons sold to me by aging nuns in old-world churches I’ve visited. I have shelves full of this stuff, little artifacts of the beautiful/not beautiful city. I collect glass and tarnished things. I collect memories too, all kinds, some that might fall into the category of demolition garbage, what might be too sharp and embarrassing to keep out in the light.
     I learned in AA to call these kinds of inmost collections my inventory. I haven’t been to AA recently, but when I used to go every week I loved the inventory step meetings. Step Four is to make “a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.” Step Ten is to continue “to take personal inventory” and when we are wrong to promptly admit. My inventory/my me-ventory/our we-ventory, one might say—an everyday assessment of the invisible collections residing beneath and within.
     I don’t believe in the Christian version of God but I do believe in the spiritual wonder located in material presence. Like my brick. Any cubic space in the world is a brick of multiple histories. I interrogate all of what feels like mine.