Winter 2000 • Vol. XXII No. 1 PoetryJanuary 1, 2000 |

Encoded Dithyramb

He sits on the bridge rail at midnight, watching  silhouettes of helicopters eclipse Star after star over the river, spotlights probing  for a speedboat load of cocaine runners Or the translucent body of a drowned girl, sunk  or floating, tangled in a queenly trail Of brocade and foam. That morning, he saw  the first narcissus blooming In sunlight on the boulevard, between a soup kitchen  and the vacant Masonic temple. Invisible pulses, transparent symbols, flooded  the traffic zone, broadcast from satellites Over the Egyptian heads of concrete lions  set at the boarded-up gate Of the Holy-of-Holies. But now the river conceals  its mudbacked inventory of relics, Its secret handshake. Through the fifty feet of darkness  his legs dangle into, under the bridge Where homeless women keep house in the shadow  of a concrete buttress, the gods have grown Opaque. He stares down, but nothing  gives him back his face. He thinks about this While searchlights avoid him. Wha

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T. R. Hummer’s tenth book of poems, Ephemeron, was published by LSU Press in November 2011; his second book of essays, Available Surfaces, will appear in University of Michigan Press’s Poets on Poetry Series in 2012. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona, and teaches at Arizona State University.

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Terrorism

By T. R. Hummer

He sits on the bridge rail at midnight, watching  silhouettes of helicopters eclipse Star after star over the river, spotlights probing  for a speedboat load of cocaine runners Or the […]

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By T. R. Hummer

He sits on the bridge rail at midnight, watching  silhouettes of helicopters eclipse Star after star over the river, spotlights probing  for a speedboat load of cocaine runners Or the […]

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