In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

  • Sitting Isohydric Meditation
  • Brian Teare (bio)

weather is water  is one way to think

about the season  seizing the street tree

another drought year  measured in questions

I asked the nurses  who gently strapped me

to the clang & throb  inside the passing

time the MRI  ground into windows

the doctor looked through  to see my future

I sit on the couch  & watch the sparrows

on the branches pant  & puff their feathers

a sort of solstice  truce with the dry heat

moving scorch from edge  to stem on each leaf

the heat’s so quiet  it’s a kind of pain [End Page 61]

nothing seems to soothe  not even his damp

armpit & its scent  of moss soaked with rain

woody sweet dear  bacterial earth

mouth my mouth opens  onto & into

his skin confusing  outside inside me

when we fuck we go  deep mammal all fur

& genital scent  in my beard a soak

of pheromones taut  swollen erectile

tissue & the swoon  of adrenaline

a chemical world  that feels insular

but is immersed in  stimulus the way

a magnetic field  held my prone body

whose protons aligned  their axes & flipped

their spins to allow  radio waves

through flesh made newly  resonant I felt [End Page 62]

removed from the world  & cocooned in sound

while the protons slowed  & their spins flipped back

radio signals  that rendered image

vertebral detail  so precise it hurt

to look at the bones  as the doctor talked

drought’s about being  porous & storing

water if you can’t  travel to get it

so some tree species  close their stomata

& wait for water  the way maples do

dying slowly from  edges to center

as a stress response  it’s a real gamble

to shut yourself up  inside of yourself

if I could I would  stay as open as

his face when I sit  on his cock & he

holds my hips & tilts  himself up deeper [End Page 63]

injury insists  it remain hidden

& grows its quota  of pain from the bones

the doctor showed me  calcifications

white as dry lichen  leaching life from

a lip of granite  how to keep going

into the quotient  of future the bones

divide inside me  the incurable

instance a given  faultless or at fault

I remain hidden  how to keep going [End Page 64]

Brian Teare

Brian Teare is the author of five books, most recently Companion Grasses (Omnidawn, 2013), a finalist for the Kingsley Tufts Award, and The Empty Form Goes All the Way to Heaven (Ahsahta, 2015). His sixth book, Doomstead Days, will be out from Nightboat Books in 2019. His honors include Lambda Literary and Publishing Triangle Awards, and fellowships from the NEA, the Pew Foundation, the American Antiquarian Society, the Headlands Center for the Arts, and the MacDowell Colony. An Associate Professor at Temple University, he lives in South Philadelphia, where he makes books by hand for his micropress, Albion Books.



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pp. 61-64
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