Bad Harvest is a resonant folk song that fills the chambers of the future with echoes of the past. Its complex twists of hereditary and personal relations with language and work open a chasm of concern for the future that Dzvinia Orlowsky locates and does a little dance on the edge of. She stares openly, even mockingly, into the pit of impermanence and unpredictability, spinning the prescribed doom and mortality of what we all know shall end: health, love, and livelihood.
Robby Johnson sits at the bar drumming his fingers on a bottle of Bud. He’s been sitting in that same spot, two stools from the door, for the past two weeks. Since his dad and brother died. The only other person at the bar this early is Jimmy.
The sun slants his hapless rays / through spiderwebbed glass, / and amid the hills of newspaper
I climbed another mountain and spat on a boulder / because climbing a mountain means nothing. To fish / from the middle of the stream, fresh catch flailing / breathlessly on the shore, gasping frivolous moonlight, / their widened eyes confused: that is my percussion
of temptation, the drum I’d rather follow through the rain
When I arose the petals of the pink / were strewn on the table, / debris of glossy tongues.
The third line on my brow— / arrived last night.
She prefers the psych ward. Her blue / nurse-gloves check restraints, flit like the furtive
Seeking out sugar but settling for deer shit / my mother leans against the side / an old Babylonian cigarette machine
Back when I taught English in Japan, the worst thing that happened to me was being denied entrance to a few restaurants. Kelly Luce, author of Pull Me Under (Farrar, Strauss & Giroux), wasn’t so lucky.
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