Heliopause (Wesleyan Poetry Series)
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Heather Christle’s stunning fourth collection blends disarming honesty with keen leaps of the imagination. Like the boundary between our sun’s sphere of influence and interstellar space, from which the book takes its name, the poems in Heliopause locate themselves along the border of the known and unknown, moving with breathtaking assurance from the page to the beyond. Christle finds striking parallels between subjects as varied as the fate of Voyager 1, the uncertain conception of new life, the nature of elegy, and the decaying transmission of information across time. Nimbly engaging with current events and lyric past, Heliopause marks a bold shift and growing vision in Christle’s work. An online reader’s companion will be available.
away ▴ If this is my home If this is my screen If these are my books imagined companions ▴ This is the city I can describe it black with power an electricity forced into light ▾ 17 ▾ 19 20 ▸ Vernon Street At that time they made the telephone in order to say Come here I need you and nothing has changed except here now you are and I in order in the order that’s arranged this child who passes now and answers an unheard question It means when your life is bad and you are
dark actions selections differ. I am not making a fool of myself For you. What I am making is A place for language in my life Which I want to be a real place Seeing I have to put up with it Anyhow. ▴ W. S. Graham Contents A Perfect Catastrophe 1 ▴ Disintegration Loop 1.1 5 ▴ Vernon Street 21 Summer 23 Realistic Flowers 25 I Am Glad of Your Arrival 26 It’s an Empire Out There 27 ▴ Elegy for Neil Armstrong 29 ▴ And This Too Comes Apart 39 Hatch 41 Such and Such a Time at Such and Such a
arrangement a private design When I’m arranged into a mother I will name my child Incredulity and like it so much I’ll do it again three or four or eight times ▾ 39 Stand up! Good and straight like a tree good and stiff like the rain-darkened gravestone perpendicular to the quiet Or sit down and make a nice lap nod Incredulity off into sleep Enumerate to her the lines of the song you haven’t meant yet 40 ▸ Hatch In every place you seem to end I have loved you There was that small and
I’d gladly put it out I swear I’d plate it! But I have only this green tongue this wet mouth There’s no detaching them and look it’s back the sun ▴ You know how indigo the word threatens always to tear off 90 ▸ into its pieces When you die that’s the first thing to go I am guessing You’d have to ask Bill Hey Bill where you are do you see letters How long do we wait before we say there’s no reply given how slowly these black words will drift to reach him given all this thick light
provide ▴ to enter into agreement with yourself to lie but only out of love for the verblessness of buildings They do not rise except once and then nothing how being is nothing and if there were a word after it would be a slow decay ▾ 7 ▴ I will love across any distance you think this has made to occur ▴ Nothing so ruthless as a life ▴ The day hangs low overhead and soon enough the new grass will emerge through the gravel They have big plans to meet in the middle and in so doing to phase