On Missing My Lover Who Agreed With The Concept Of Past Lives, I Read Moby Dick
I hoped for a parti-coloured resurrection dragging me by the legs, by crowds of water gazers. I had been his wife, the dint, the Nantucket craft, November in my soul. Landsmen delineate chaos; sentinels blend green fields gone. That place: the sense of weight and pressure of voices all over the house. His belted coral, his substitute pistol thrown over me. I found all the Time whipping me. No help for it-- it’s the Black Sea in a midnight gale. Stir his bitter sigh one single inch. With his upper hand circulation off, I can only hear a great rattling of coaches. Old Craft, Great Original—nothing was to be heard. This is the price you risk to drive a nervous man from the stream. The first dead American harpoon, however wild, explains our mystery. Some people are nothing particular. I lost myself at the feet of your besmoked coffin entering the gable-ended sea.
On Reading a Copy of Pushkin I Stole from My Childhood Rapist, a Cento
He dadled me as a small boy, produced a haze in me. I was just 9 years of age, soul still blossoming-out. I don’t know why. My kith, my kin, three whole hours-- one customary grief each hour, each day. A roar of violins, violent surging, just another dumb moon over a dumb horizon. His thievish mouth all in a blaze for sport, for the crumbled sofa. Here there’s no conscience; here no sense. He killed eight years in such a style. I learnt new sadness, unkind terror and its consolation. How to hiss him off. Who would have thought it? I’ve no one here who comprehends me. I drink in the midnight. I walk the shore, I watch the weather, I see him in dream: pale transcript of a vivid master. How well he knew the way to hurt. I only write like this, you know, because I’m grieving still. I might have said a word and then thought day and night and thought again about one thing: when will the devil come for you? I tell my early life, unlock my tongue. All right, you want my resurrection: thank God, you had no inclination to blow your brains out.
-- C. Russell Price is a Lambda fellow, Ragdale fellow, Literary Death Match champion, and a Windy City Times 30 Under 30 honoree. They are the author of Tonight, We Fuck theTrailer Park Out of Each Other (Sibling Rivalry Press) and are currently at work on a full length poetry collection (HUMAN FLESH SEARCH ENGINE) and a collection of essays (everyone is doing it; they just aren’t telling you). Price, originally from Virginia, now lives and teaches poetry in Chicago.