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Nuar Alsadir Nuar Alsadir’s poems “are a delicate mix of the quotidian and the profound. In witty, vibrant, always surprising turns, she reveals to us the weight of each fleeting moment.” Widely published in such journals as Slate, Ploughshares, the Kenyon Review, Grand Street, and AGNI, as well as various anthologies, Alsadir teaches writing at New York University, where she also earned an M.F.A. in creative writing and a Ph.D. in literature. A graduate of Amherst College, she has been awarded writing fellowships from Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and her essays have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Bookforum, and Tin House. Bats They live inside walls—not like you or the other rodents, but with wings and fangs, a clicking almost flamenco. And unlike you, they are not ashamed: they share their darkness like a piece of delight and when the circling begins do not feel their minds invert. You, crawlers, guard your flight, may swim the air in dreams but always rise for breath, belief. The bats do not need applause. If you clap, they will change direction. 46 1CHARARA_pages_i-164.qxd:Layout 1 11/14/08 2:36 PM Page 46 The Riddle of the Shrink It is the distress of losing a ticket or any other document granting passage. When the phone disconnects just as you were about to be let in on a secret, you become the letter that never receives a response, the ball that rolls under the neighbor’s fence and stays. The friend you have entrusted with your death song, an editor, has changed the words. Now it is you, not your modifiers, who will dangle, suspended between this world and the next. The image of the future is the memory of the dream in which you are standing before a kiosk, attempting a transaction with a forgotten code. The more you talk, the more you are left alone. At times, you are curious whether or not someone is in the room, but fear it would be too revealing to check. At times, you strain to hear another’s conversation while feigning involvement in your own. When the subway doors open and everyone rushes to take a seat, Nuar Alsadir 47 1CHARARA_pages_i-164.qxd:Layout 1 11/14/08 2:36 PM Page 47 you are trying to get over to the right lane in fast traffic. It is like wearing stockings with a stretched-out waistband under a skirt, or dreaming that the alarm is about to go off. The Garden There is no garden, there never was. The man who cuts the grass is stealing, making promises with his Miracle-Gro and reeling in the fish. I want to believe in something: each morning I look out at the patches, squint until they turn green. Are you with me, wherewithal? I am everywhere without. A garden is a mood: this one less of disciple’s brood than drought. 48 Nuar Alsadir 1CHARARA_pages_i-164.qxd:Layout 1 11/14/08 2:36 PM Page 48 ...


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MARC Record
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