In this Book

Bright Existence
summary
The poems in Brenda Hillman’s new collection, a companion volume to her recent Death Tratates, offer a dynamic vision of a universe founded on the tensions between light and dark , existence and non-existence, male and female, spirit and matter. Informed in part by Gnostic concepts of the separate soul in search of its divine origins (“spirit held by matter”). This dualistic vision is cast in contemporary terms and seeks resolution of these tensions through acceptance.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. p. ix
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  1. A Note about the Book
  2. p. x
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  1. Little Furnace
  2. p. 1
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  1. I. Twelve Dawns
  2. p. 3
  1. Old Ice
  2. p. 5
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  1. Dark Existence
  2. p. 6
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  1. Black Series
  2. p. 7
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  1. The Servant
  2. p. 8
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  1. December Shadow
  2. p. 9
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  1. January Dawn
  2. p. 10
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  1. March Dawn
  2. p. 11
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  1. Blossoms Appearing
  2. p. 12
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  1. Every Life
  2. p. 13
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  1. A Vigil
  2. p. 14
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  1. First Thought
  2. pp. 15-16
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  1. II. Dark Matter
  2. p. 17
  1. Mighty Forms
  2. p. 19
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  1. Adult Joy
  2. pp. 20-21
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  1. Food
  2. pp. 22-24
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  1. Holding On
  2. p. 25
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  1. Recycling Center
  2. pp. 26-27
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  1. The Rat
  2. pp. 28-29
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  1. Sorrow of Matter
  2. pp. 30-31
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  1. The Spell
  2. p. 32
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  1. Several Errands
  2. pp. 33-34
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  1. (interruption)
  2. p. 35
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  1. Dark Matter
  2. pp. 36-37
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  1. The Hair
  2. p. 38
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  1. Toll Collector
  2. pp. 39-40
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  1. III. Gnostic Heaven
  2. p. 41
  1. Gnostic Heaven
  2. pp. 43-44
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  1. Magdalene
  2. pp. 45-48
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  1. Meridian Plinth
  2. pp. 49-50
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  1. Autumn Moon
  2. pp. 51-55
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  1. (interruption)
  2. p. 56
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  1. Steinberg Case
  2. pp. 57-61
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  1. Small Spaces
  2. p. 62
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  1. untitled fragment
  2. p. 63
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  1. untitled fragment
  2. p. 64
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  1. untitled fragment
  2. p. 65
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  1. untitled fragment
  2. p. 66
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  1. untitled fragment
  2. p. 67
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  1. A Foghorn
  2. pp. 68-69
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  1. IV. Bright Existence
  2. p. 71
  1. Trapped Light
  2. p. 73
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  1. Vast Fluttering
  2. pp. 74-76
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  1. Almost Shadow
  2. p. 77
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  1. Spare World
  2. pp. 78-80
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  1. (interruption)
  2. p. 81
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  1. Branch, Scraping
  2. pp. 82-83
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  1. Archaic Wanderings
  2. p. 84
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  1. Torn Shadow
  2. pp. 85-87
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  1. Marshy Area
  2. p. 88
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  1. Useful Shadow
  2. pp. 89-90
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  1. Luminous Textures
  2. pp. 91-93
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  1. Empty Shadow
  2. pp. 94-95
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  1. Bright Existence
  2. p. 96
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  1. The Snakeskin
  2. p. 99
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