- Backward-Spreading Brightness, and: Rejoinder
Clear enough to see you christen or condemn anotheron the side of a beige building, I take the boat outof the body that returns itself to me. I don’t evenremember the stupid thing it did or why I wanted itgone. The lake is here so I take it through the city.The city is here so I take it through the lake, open itinto line. I clap two ends of the book shut. It readtheir hands flew up in surprise. It told me to stop readingmusic into things already music, already in the shapeof reaching up to anoint or catch falling. It held meatop the water that wasn’t there. Only ruminant.Only I can’t tell which stomach is snow and whichis the sun that melts it backward into puddle. Tileson the underside of the boat. I bend over to bookfanning open in the slow current, reflecting wherethe scene turns silt in color then bright where peoplelive. They’re so small I can only imagine what they do. [End Page 129]
There have been physical impediments to forsaking my name.I look in the mirror and the mirror lies.I lie every time I put on my eyes.The wind whirls down its color into clothes,resembling the way it whips through the legsthat grieve giving birth to us,pushing inscrutability into leaveswhich are tossing somewhere, somewhere on the line.It is always the line that hangs me.Wrings my head into a bucket of loam.My head is still here and I’m faithful to it.Faithful to a fault. And the mirror when it turnsdisappears into no more answers. [End Page 130]
Christopher Kondrich is the author of Contrapuntal (Parlor Press, 2013). New poems also appear or are forthcoming in American Letters & Commentary, Boston Review, Guernica, Jerry, the Paris-American, and Washington Square. A recent winner of the Paris-American Reading Series Contest, he is a PhD candidate at the University of Denver and an editor for Denver Quarterly.