A Thing Past, an excerpt from Come Closer, by Leanne Averbach

A Thing Past

may be plucked of a sudden from the well, its memory
cavity. No query is necessary, nor forwarding address.

It may arrive dull, meaningless, slathered in vague clutter,
or rise pristine to quake us, better

than ever from nowhere. It will peel us raw
in a flash—that muted ransom. It repeats, no will to resist,

harnessing us to the bed. It has a keen sense
of smell and fashion. It remembers a friend

of a friend who knew all about the incident. It is a witness
who doesn’t show up as you make the case again, again the indefinite

verdict, an urge to call someone. Hello? Am I okay? Ruby cascades
of elixir in your glass help alternately to hold it, send it back into the well, create

new files in which to keep it. That awkward taste of the half-
learned, the feel of being tattooed inside, an extra set of organs

for recalling. Out the window Canada Geese point elsewhere,
passports in their brains. They take one last look at themselves

in the lagoon before slipping off the radar as gulls scratch
the air, bragging winter-worthiness

through rubbery feathersuits and I drift
beneath the shadowy flim-flam of love.

For more information about Come Closer, or to purchase the book, please click here.

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Come Closer | Leanne Averbach

Come Closer, by Leanne AverbachISBN: 9781926639192
Pub Date: Fall 2010

Longlisted for the 2011 ReLit Award

From poet and award-winning filmmaker Leanne Averbach comes a new collection of poems. Come Closer draws on themes as widespread as Averbach’s left-wing-activist and trade-union-organizer past, the loss of her parents, the Iraq War, and the homeless, all seen through the gritty lens of New York City and with a persistent inner dialogue about love, family, and doubt. Cool-burning with the strange and the sensual, Come Closer takes the imposing realities of political, environmental, and social upheaval, and infuses each with the personal.

Praise for Leanne Averbach

“Witty, cynical and startlingly lusty, Averbach’s lushly lyrical, ‘thick wet strokes’ of irreverence are finely wrought with haunting immediacy. Her work provides a must-read collection: highly charged eroto-comic and compelling snapshots that linger.”—Adeena Karasick

“Averbach’s poems swing from worldly to wild.”—Georgia Straight

Leanne Averbach is a Canadian poet and filmmaker. She has been published and has performed with musicians across Canada, in the US, and in Italy. Her first book, Fever (Mansfield Press), was shortlisted for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Prize in 2006. Her companion CD Fever is a fusion of her spoken words and the blues/jazz accompaniment of the Vancouver group Indigo. Averbach’s second short film based on her poetry, Teacups & Mink, has garnered numerous awards. For more information visit www.leanneaverbach.com.

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