Bruce Bond



You could choose to give up choice a moment,
attending to your breath, to the strange beast
that is your heartbeat thrashing in its closet.
Or watch the waves across the nothingness
rise and fall, as those you loved rose and fell.
You could say, time to take grief for a walk,
to break down in the starless park a little,
as words break, or clarity as it forsakes
the sword of language that labors to be clear.
You here, me there, the path between us nowhere
to be seen, save those moments you choose
a meaning that never existed, that chooses you,
that rises and falls on your breath like water
kneeling to the shoreline with all that power.


How Adam reached back at the creation
is anyone’s guess. Imagine the terror,
being no one yet, holding out your hand,
between your nothingness and your creator
an inch of sky for faith to leap across.
And so this blaze in the engine of things,
each thought an afterthought, a Pentecost,
a body feasting on its own ghost wings.
Dawn breaks. Always a little early, a little
late. Picture here the jeweler’s monocle,
the inch he fits into that eye that squints.
I see you, he says, as the flywheel spins
this way, toward a prospect that was there
a moment, just before his life appeared.


BRUCE BOND is the author of nine published books of poetry, most recently Choir of the Wells (Etruscan, 2013), The Visible (LSU, 2012), Peal (Etruscan, 2009), and Blind Rain (LSU, 2008). In addition he has two other books forthcoming: The Other Sky (poems in collaboration with the painter Aron Wiesenfeld, intro by Stephen Dunn, Etruscan Press) and For the Lost Cathedral (LSU Press). Presently he is a Regents Professor of English at the University of North Texas and Poetry Editor for American Literary Review.


Read more by Bruce Bond:

Poems at The Kenyon Review
Poems at The Poetry Foundation
Poems at Verse Daily