Your father is lying on the couch under a quilt with an Apsáalooke print on it. He tells you, I’m sorry I can’t go, this thing is killing me. And you nod your head that folds your high-necked sweater down because it is old and has been worn and washed time and again. You are hot, standing there in your sweater and your jacket and your bright vest with your wool hat and two layers of pants. He tells you, You’ll be fine but stay off the reservation. He tells you he’s expecting big things from you—that you will feed the family over the winter after today.
The NYT today says Haiti’s Baby Doc / Duvalier is dead. So that’s that— / another brutal dictator escapes without / paying his tab. It’s almost dusk / as a cloud a little darker than the others / leans down to kiss the grey sea.
We want to believe that there is nothing natural about numbers. These ciphers are our perfect projections, whom we marshal and archive, in endless right angles. Though they have pores and spines, the tables we fashion for them are not carcasses or skeletons, not birds shorn of feathers and skin.
This afternoon, Iris’s mother plans to swallow a pill that will dissolved her thyroid gland, cure her hyperactive metabolic disorder, and turn her, temporarily, radioactive. She will lift the white pill over her blushed lips and open her teeth so that the chalky capsule can dissolve in her arteries and turn her blue veins nuclear.
Robert Lopez’s All Back Full is the most nihilistic book I’ve read in years. It is a remarkable achievement, especially if one measures an artistic achievement by its completeness of vision and demonstration of technique. Yet it also left me cold.
Open for Submissions: 2017 Neil Shepard Prizes in Poetry, Fiction, and Creative Nonfiction! SUBMIT NOW for Green Mountains Review‘s 2017 Neil Shepard Prizes in Poetry, Fiction, and Creative Nonfiction! This year’s contest will be judged by Camille Dungy (Poetry), Glen...
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
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