(Image: Jerry Bowley)

The boardwalks here ending midsentence

i.


The way the thing is kept moist, sluiced, sliced, the way it knows only itself. Makes reference to only itself. This won’t be without consequence. Quiet down now, there is a woman making her way artistically through the aisle

Affected systems as follow: pupil, gut, salivary glands, adrenal gland (responsible for rapid liberation of adrenaline into blood), liver, spleen, genitalia, the muscular system. Art is always happening
 
A body that cannot sink into the Alberta badland is the body unwinding the cowl—you took the cloth, laid out the church offering box, shook it a little

Sunflower, maize, shortgrass in fall—the woman has lain her cheek against the floor. New critics, gender performance, affects of faith: the concerto was just for the savior


ii.

What does your situatedness matter when you are still pointed at a cave, a basin?

All alone in the belly of a hill with your photograph-maker. All those turn-of-the-century bathing suits. Wet cotton, wormy reeds, leech-y placenta legs. What is a conflated thing? What the pleasant curve of calf to those women now? Well noted, [student]. Very
 
Apt. Add a scratch or two to make it authentic. Add a sulfuric growth under the surface. Add an egg. Speak the thing if you can. (I am trying to tell you.) Like cap guns firing nowhere, the librettos that end in cities. The smell of sulfate, bubblegum, mint-green ice cream—the stained animal, the toppling taxonomy
 
It was a school trip, you know Lydia, it—
 
Your exegesis became hollow. Quick now. The witlessness of youth, the way the bodies moved over thin-bridged pathways over steam


Erin Russell @etcall  is a writer from Calgary living in Amsterdam. Her work has appeared in Scrivener, Montage, Train, Time Out, and The Holland Times and has been translated into French and Chinese. She won the Wycliffe College Poetry Award at the University of Toronto two years in a row. She lectures in literature and writing at Amsterdam University College. 

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