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  • The Saved, and: Ascension, and: Touch, and: The Fabulist, and: Glass
  • Bruce Bond (bio)
  • The Saved

Once the burden of uncertainty grew large enough to fill the sky it came from, he lay down in the meadow and looked through the clouds, all so much heavier than him, the great white throne with an even greater light upon it. He thought of his mother’s stories of hell, how scared she was and sure in the ways of bullets and what they shatter. Then the sunlight filled each glass with milk, and he drank turning white as bread and angels, until he finally wore the color of music and shook the way that music shakes a wall or wind the fields that are the many heavens of none now who hears a name among them. [End Page 61]

  • Ascension

If indeed the flesh is mostly water, why is it we repeat, ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Why not the ocean in us that salts our blood, our skin, our tides of air. Or why not air to air, since each speck of dust is made in turn of quantum things and the emptiness between them. Why return to the visible beneath our shoes, the feathery thing we stir with sticks to see if there is fire still. There is. You know this. You who stare down to read the stones, die a little, feel the daylight gather through a sea of grass the mighty rivers of the trees. [End Page 62]

  • Touch

What does not kill you breaks you into pieces, each with its bed, its bible, its gated glass, the parts you can and cannot quite recall. What was that thing that pinned you to the wall and hollered. No matter. That day you dread is impotent against the part that’s dead. Just like a wound to darken as it heals the dark. What does not darken takes its pills. Have you noticed. Sound travels farthest at night. It bleeds into your convalescence. And you love that. Certain power failure makes strong the black between the stars. Beneath each touch a little shadow. Some days distance is kindness. And then, it’s only distance. [End Page 63]

  • The Fabulist

What I love to hate about the dead, you cannot kill them. I try, believe me, to put them out of their misery, though they keep returning to my bed, forgetful in a way that sleep is not. Sleep, my tiny campfire in the bones of the ear, the wilderness bows down to hear you, to gather you into its net. You know what it is to have a future open as the ones who led you there dissolve. What we lose is everywhere the way chaos is buried in the structure of obsession. Bereavement fades, we say, beneath the darker fury of the day. [End Page 64]

  • Glass

If time is a river, it flows backward as I step against the current, my face a shield that crumbles as I push ahead. What I would preserve, I sacrifice to want and habit, to a conversation made of little boxes I put my fear in. My breath throws its language to the lions. I am, says the subtext as I listen, I am what I cherish, do, rail against, the neck I stiffen, the dignity I crack. I am what dies so I might live again, so I might talk it over over drinks, quick to forgive the dig, the boast, the roar, the words that break between us into laughter. [End Page 65]

Bruce Bond

Bruce Bond
Bruce Bond is the author of twelve books, including three forthcoming: Immanent Distance: Poetry and the Metaphysics of the Near at Hand (University of Michigan Press), For the Lost Cathedral (LSU Press) and The Other Sky (Etruscan Press). Presently he is Regents Professor at the University of North Texas.


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pp. 61-65
Launched on MUSE
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