by Brent Terry
It was the year of weird food and devastation.
The dancehalls were torched, poets kicked apart,
verses left to bleed out in the bushes.
The victors raged their giddy flags from the backs
of pickups, ground the fleeing children
beneath their oversized tires. Mothers shamble
the barrens still, operatic effigies calling baby,
baby, please. Bodies sing from the trees.
It never rains anymore, but when it does
the rivers devour their bridges, scour
the burned encampments, carve new nightmares
into badlands of slag and ash.
Somebody says a blessing over the tater tots.
Somebody organizes the ammo.
Someone writes a hymn for the drowning,
but the singers are shitfaced in the choirloft.
Through the holes in your roof the stars come in
to kiss you in your sleep.
Terry organized the Hartford Writers Resist event, which drew 30 writers and 175 attendees. He wrote "The End of Wonder" for the occasion.
Brent Terry delights in smashing narrative with assorted hammers then reassembling the shards into mosaics and ransom notes, glimmering tapestries of glass and blood. Sometimes they sing to him in his sleep; sometimes they hide his car keys. He calls them poems, but you can call them whatever you want. Terry is the author of two collections of poetry, Wicked, Excellently (Custom Words, 2007) and the chapbook yesnomaybe (Main Street Rag, 2002). His poems, stories, reviews and essays have been published in magazines and journals the world over (if you consider the U.S., Canada and Scotland to be the world over). Terry teaches at Eastern Connecticut State University and Steppingstone Academy Hartford.