Today's poem is "There Are Things We Are Not Meant to See"
from One

Hanging Loose Press

Gerald Fleming's most recent books are The Choreographer (Sixteen Rivers Press, San Francisco) and Night of Pure Breathing, prose poems (Hanging Loose). From 1995-2000 he edited and published the literary magazine Barnabe Mountain Review, and is currently editing both the limited-edition vitreous magazine One (More) Glass and The Collected Prose and Poetry of Lawrence Fixel. Fleming taught in the San Francisco public schools for thirty-seven years and has written three books for teachers, including Rain, Steam, and Speed (Jossey-Bass/Wiley). He lives part of the year in Paris.

Books by Gerald Fleming:

Other poems on the web by Gerald Fleming:
"Long Marriage"
"Bone & Silence"
Two poems
Two poems

About One:

"Gerald Fleming is a remarkable writer, made more so by his commitment to the prose poem, a form which at its best, as here, is a delicious treat on almost every occasion. His new volume, One, takes on the monosyllable and wrestles it into dizzying and wonderful pretzel-esque works which may appear, at first glance, non-pretzel-esque. You'll probably love this book as much as I do."
—Frederick Barthelme

"At times wry and wickedly self-aware, these linked prose vignettes deepen into a resonant, searching meditation on that which resides hidden within us-metastatic cells, racism we've spent half our years unlearning, the slow burn of our lives. Fleming's voice is rich with a plainspoken elegance that evokes flickers of Ovid ("the years fled from her face," he writes in elegy) or the quieted mind of a Gerard Manley Hopkins who's made peace with his god and is engaged in the contemplative practice of ordinary life. In this almost-Oulipian project, poet and speaker both gently interrogate language and self, "take each shred down from the line/sew it to the next, soak it in brine/look at it/see that it means in ways we've not known-now finds us, & like us it's scarred now, but still ours-back in our mouths, on our tongues-quick birds!-flung into the air of our time." One is a powerful collection woven of grief, compassion, and the joy of a life well lived. Sidling up against fiction's narrative drive, it's told in a reinvented sprung rhythm sure and steady as a heartbeat, as the beat of one's own footsteps."
—Miriam Bird Greenberg

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