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title

Bright Existence

Brenda Hillman

Publication Year: 1993

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.

Published by: Wesleyan University Press

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-

Grateful acknowledgment is made to the following periodicals in which these poems first appeared or will appear, sometimes in different forms:...

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A Note about the Book

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pp. x-

These poems were influenced by my readings in gnosticism, particularly Hans Jonas, to whom I owe a debt, and the old texts in The Nag Hammadi Library, which emphasize an inward search for reality, a disjunction between spirit...

Little Furnace

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pp. 1-

I. Twelve Dawns

Old Ice

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pp. 5-

Dark Existence

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pp. 6-

Black Series

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pp. 7-

The Servant

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pp. 8-

December Shadow

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pp. 9-

January Dawn

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pp. 10-

March Dawn

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pp. 11-

Blossoms Appearing

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pp. 12-

Every Life

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pp. 13-

A Vigil

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pp. 14-

First Thought

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pp. 15-16

II. Dark Matter

Mighty Forms

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pp. 19-

Adult Joy

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pp. 20-21

Food

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pp. 22-24

Holding On

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pp. 25-

Recycling Center

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pp. 26-27

The Rat

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pp. 28-29

Sorrow of Matter

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pp. 30-31

The Spell

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pp. 32-

Several Errands

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pp. 33-34

(interruption)

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pp. 35-

Dark Matter

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pp. 36-37

The Hair

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pp. 38-

Toll Collector

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pp. 39-40

III. Gnostic Heaven

Gnostic Heaven

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pp. 43-44

Magdalene

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pp. 45-48

Meridian Plinth

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pp. 49-50

Autumn Moon

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pp. 51-55

(interruption)

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pp. 56-

Steinberg Case

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pp. 57-61

Small Spaces

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pp. 62-

untitled fragment

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pp. 63-

untitled fragment

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pp. 64-

untitled fragment

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pp. 65-

untitled fragment

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pp. 66-

untitled fragment

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pp. 67-

A Foghorn

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pp. 68-69

IV. Bright Existence

Trapped Light

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pp. 73-

Vast Fluttering

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pp. 74-76

Almost Shadow

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pp. 77-

Spare World

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pp. 78-80

(interruption)

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pp. 81-

Branch, Scraping

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pp. 82-83

Archaic Wanderings

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pp. 84-

Torn Shadow

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pp. 85-87

Marshy Area

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pp. 88-

Useful Shadow

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pp. 89-90

Luminous Textures

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pp. 91-93

Empty Shadow

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pp. 94-95

Bright Existence

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pp. 96-

The Snakeskin

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pp. 99-


E-ISBN-13: 9780819572028
Print-ISBN-13: 9780819522047

Page Count: 112
Publication Year: 1993

Series Title: Wesleyan Poetry Series

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