Bruce Weber



I Was Delivered By William Carlos Williams

when i was plucked from the womb by william carlos williams a haiku wailed out of my mouth and dr. williams patted my rump and whispered in my ear that he liked my poem because it was as tangible as the yowling of boys sticking their feet in an icy river. and when i learned to crawl dr. williams came to my playroom and pretended to be a red wheelbarrow i'd cart around into imaginary corners and together we'd investigate the duality's clinging to rocks or bricks or pick-up-sticks or dandelion seeds or lift our index finger to write wet words upon frosted windows. dr. williams told me to open my eyes big to everything passing within the radius of my circumference like an ant carrying a crumb on his back like a day laborer pungent with the odor of a rickety old building like a woman seated motionless on a bed in a painting by edward hopper. dr. williams was my childhood companion on travels to abstract places outdistancing narratives tumbling down the stairs and we'd hold a telescope to our eye to witness atoms dancing in their shells or waves cresting on a seashore. dr. williams helped me understand the life force inside things accidentally spilling or propped up so they stand tall or dark as an eclipse of the sun and moon making us scratch our head's for the answers to all things intangible. yes dr. williams delivered me to the world bloody crying grasping to understand the properties of steam the porousness of clouds the elemental structure of the air floating between us.


The Little Girl Threw Black Paint
On Her Mommy's Wedding Dress


the little girl the little girl threw black paint threw black paint on her mommy's wedding dress on her mommy's white satin wedding dress because she didn't want to share her mommy with some guy who'd crack her over the head when he caught her setting her dolls on fire or plucking out their eyeballs or traveling their body with her tongue licking their plastic skin because it gave her a chill of pleasure and demanding they kiss her they undress her they climb her like a hill in the park like her real daddy used to do when her mommy was out shopping because he was a good daddy because he always bought her ice cream with sprinkles always called her his fragrant little garden then he'd stick her head in the oven to see how long she could hold her breath before coughing or order her to recite her times tables while he tied her tongue to the whirling ceiling fan so she launched a bucket of black paint of black paint on her mommy's wedding dress on her mommy's white satin wedding dress because she didn't want anyone getting under the covers asking for favors she wanted to play with her dolls alone to brush their long blond hair to rub cream over their smooth skin to make them soft make them melt make them ooh and aah because then nobody could take them away nobody could steal them nobody could interfere with the naughty lessons she taught them


The Woman With The Video Camera

she videotaped the way rain fell in hard diagonals/the white noise emanating from the grayness of the tv screen/how the atmosphere affected personality disorders/how the weather shaped the destinies of muslims/the bouncing of children on beds while the babysitter was sleeping/the arrangement of mirrors of tables of lamps of pictures on walls/how light coated ever face/how hair grows on a head/she videotaped the textures of surrender/the cool breath of a stranger on a neck/the hand's passage up a thigh/the soft pressing of fingers on a groin/she aimed her camera at the runners jogging/the dinner parties foiled by a burnt chicken/the drunken antics of an uncle puffing cigar smoke/the geometry of windows maintaining their rigid attitude against the dirt/she turned the camera on the reunion of mothers and daughters/the warm creasing embrace/the kisses upon cheekbones/the visitations of grandchildren on xmas/the streamers extending out of mouths on new year/the traffic inside whore houses/ the movement of men entering room removing hats removing gloves removing scarfs removing topcoats removing pants removing undergarments/she videotapes every nuance of color/ every pore marking survival/every grip on the banister/every foot rising up/every shoe being tied/her eyes absorbing the protocol of nightlight saying come undress me with your camera penetrate every dominion


About the Author

Bruce Weber is the author of four published books of poetry, These Poems are Not Pretty (Miami: Palmetto Press, 1992), How the Poem Died (New York: Linear Arts, 1998), Poetic Justice (Icon Press, 2004), and The First Time I Had Sex with T. S. Eliot (Venom Press, 2004). His work has appeared in numerous magazines, including in recent issues of Long Shot, Chronogram, Lips, Saint Elizabeth, and A Gathering of the Tribes. His work was also featured in the Downtown Poets Anthology, The Second Word Thursdays Anthology, and, most recently, in the anthology UP IS UP, BUT SO IS DOWN; DOWNTOWN WRITINGS, 1978-1992 (New York: New York University, 2006). Bruce has performed regularly in the New York area, both alone and with his group, Bruce Weber's No Chance Ensemble, which incorporates poetry, theatre, music and dance, and has produced the CD Let's Dine Like Jack Johnson Tonight. He is the organizer of SOS: Sunday Open Series at ABC NO RIO, the editor of the broadside Stained Sheets, and the producer of the 13 years running Alternative New Year's Day Spoken Word/Performance Extravaganza. Bruce is also Director of Research and Exhibitions at Berry-Hill Galleries, which he has recently curated the major exhibitions Homage to the Square: Images of Washington Square, 1890-1965, The Heart of the Matter: The Still Lifes of Marsden Hartley, Chase Inside & Out: The Aesthetic Interiors of William Merritt Chase, and Toward a New American Cubism. His book Paintings of New York, 1800-1950 (San Francisco: Pomegranate Press) appeared in the fall of 2005.

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