Stranded in the Land of Transients

Comb-bound: 70 pp.
Published: 2000

Price: $12.50




This volume’s forty-seven poems trace Brodsky’s life as a road-poet and manager of outlet stores, during a time when he was "itinerant minister of surplus and flaw," traveling throughout the Midwest, "selling his soul wholesale," by day, and assuaging his loneliness, at night, with wine and music, while hiding himself away in hotel bars that might absorb him in their "dim-lit anonymity."



Spider and Fly

Monotony spins its weblike miasma.
Filamentous silence entraps me
On this long drive home,
As my nervous fingers flit feverishly
Over the radio's push buttons
To squash the persistent buzzing I make
Like a fly striking a bulb aching to explode.
I light on the mind's circumference

And find myself hanging upside down,
From the fundus of an incandescent vacuum,
Dangling nauseously in living asphyxia.
Eight hairy legs, racing on air
Like skate blades sliding over ice,
Carry me to the edge of self-awareness,
From where I'll view the entanglement
And ensuing predation of two alien species.

For now, highway strands I follow
Vibrate the web hung from my brain.
I lose equilibrium, sense of direction
And sink into its undulating net.
Slogging knee-deep in monotony,
I can't stop my soggy plodding
Toward the lair's center,
Where fly and spider are inextricably snared.



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