20160120

Bob Heman


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The distance they found had been broken in half. There were maps each time it began.


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Half of it was a day, more or less. Half of it was a man singing, or the explanation of a prayer. Half of it was the tree that was left over. Half of it was a machine pulled by horses.


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Repeats the journey using a different river. Retraces their steps choosing a different word. Slices the mountain in half to allow the sun to enter. Allows the man to dance himself to death.


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Opens a door in each tree he passes. Opens windows in the sky that leans too close. Turns the man into a car that is repeated. Turns the bear into a building filled with cows.


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Inspects the door for bruises. Asks the lawn questions about the truth. Arranges the clouds so they will require an explanation. Picks up the men to see how much they weigh.


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They were allowed to wear shirts with pictures of bears, with pictures of the night, with pictures of the letter “A.” They were allowed to use the carts the goats left behind. They were allowed to use the window over and over again. They were allowed to use the word “please.”


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Stories with horses or dogs are not allowed.


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The formal agreement filled with words they don’t recognize. The alligators another example of the way a pond can grow too small. When she talks about smoke she shows them an example. He has a stick that has many uses, and a car that has no motor.


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Would like to believe that his words could change the woman, the sky, the way the trees are measured, the weight of the walnuts removed from the jar.


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Unfolds the map so that the bridges are made of stone and the road ends where the lake is tentatively drawn.


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There were places the fat man could not go. There were cars that were always filled with frogs. There was a tree that was only an explanation, and a bear that was repeated too many times. There was a word they were each required to learn.


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They carry what is not yet needed. They use the word “anticipate” in the wrong way. They think the bears must be prepared. They think the women will enter soon.


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The map can be manipulated to include the woman both before and after.


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They are only a story once they are removed from the forest.




Bob Heman’s words have appeared recently in Before Passing (great weather for MEDIA, 2015) and Palabras Luminosas: Luminous Words (Rogue Scholar’s Press, 2016), as well as in/on a microbook/earring from Purgatory Pie Press. A collage of his is included in the international collection ABCurdities: A Collage Alphabet (Benzene Editions, 2015).
 
 
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