Books » Chapter and Verse

Reborn

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A man in a green mask
asks me to count
backwards from one
hundred. At ninety-eight
the table begins to spin;
I feel as if I'm being swallowed
by the light 
that hangs above me
like giant insect eyes.

Ican mark time
by the surgeries; the way
my grandmother marked
my growth

with pencil slashes
on her kitchen doorframe.

Each time I awake
from that abyss
where God refuses to dwell —
my mouth a desert;
my eyes two stones
sunk in my skull —
some small part of me
has died, some
small part reborn]

— Jason Irwin

Jason Irwin's first collection, Watering the Dead, won the 2006/2007 Transcontinental Poetry Award and was published in 2008 by Pavement Saw Press. Most recently, he's had work published in Potomac, Grey Sparrow and Future Cycle Press' anthology American Society: What Poets See. He lives in Highland Park. Many writers featured in Chapter & Verse are guests of radio show Prosody, produced by Jan Beatty and Ellen Wadey. Prosody airs every Saturday morning on 90.5 FM.

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