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Apr. 4, 2010
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The usefulness of the nerves, then, would lie in conveying the faculty of sensation and motion from its source to the several parts; that of the arteries is to maintain the natural heat and nourish the psychic pneuma;

Noga Arikha, Passions and Tempers



In order to sustain, or perhaps like
gut string, a fiber, a hair; strict, removed
to dry, taut into quiver then shudder
of breath and movement. In order to comfort,
to sweep against and register, a buttress
against the constant hammer. The torso
caged, a wire webbed from rib to pelvis,
coccyx to breastplate, a latticework frame.
Or perhaps a stamp, impression not of breath
but rhythm, not of air and blood against
muscle, but a nerve or tendon tripped, quaking
the fist of obscure flesh in progress of time.
To fasten the heart in place within a recess,
in order to carry and preserve.

Aviva Englander Cristy received her M.F.A. in poetry from George Mason University. While she finds Milwaukee to be a lovely city, she dearly misses the ocean and earthquakes and will be returning to Southern California as soon as possible. Her poems have appeared and are forthcoming in: The Hollins Critic; The Chiron Review; Presa; Chance; and Indefinite Space, among others.


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