Labyrinth

Behind the hiss and ring that is the damage I have done
in the brash ensembles of my foolish hours lies a stillness

I may never touch again, though I know too, as John Cage
says, none alive touches true stillness and survives. There

will always be a hum of nerves, without which silence goes
unheard, however presupposed, half a figure, half a ground,

the shadow of a voice, a cry, perhaps, or, if we listen deeper,
a sonic landscape. Silence as the ghost that walks the long

white halls of paradise or intensive care, knocking on doors
no one answers, looking into rooms with breathing machines

whose oceans are bottomless, dark, and darkly engineered
to put the tormented ear to sleep, because they are not there.

Bruce Bond

Bruce Bond

Bruce Bond is the author of twenty-seven books including, Blackout Starlight: New and Selected Poems 1997-2015 (E. Phillabaum Award, LSU), Rise and Fall of the Lesser Sun Gods (Elixir Prize, Elixir Press, 2018), Frankenstein’s Children (Lost Horse, 2018), Dear Reader (Parlor, 2018), Plurality and the Poetics of Self (Palgrave, 2019), Words Written Against the Walls of the City (LSU, 2019), Scar (Etruscan, 2020), Behemoth (New Criterion Prize, Criterion Books), The Calling (Parlor Press, 2021), and Patmos (Juniper Prize, UMass, 2021).
Bruce Bond

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Author: Bruce Bond

Bruce Bond is the author of twenty-seven books including, Blackout Starlight: New and Selected Poems 1997-2015 (E. Phillabaum Award, LSU), Rise and Fall of the Lesser Sun Gods (Elixir Prize, Elixir Press, 2018), Frankenstein’s Children (Lost Horse, 2018), Dear Reader (Parlor, 2018), Plurality and the Poetics of Self (Palgrave, 2019), Words Written Against the Walls of the City (LSU, 2019), Scar (Etruscan, 2020), Behemoth (New Criterion Prize, Criterion Books), The Calling (Parlor Press, 2021), and Patmos (Juniper Prize, UMass, 2021).