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Here, Bullet
January 6, 2007 11:27 AM   Subscribe

The horror of Iraq, in poetry. [Via.]
posted by homunculus (13 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Here, Bullet
If a body is what you want,
then here is bone and gristle and flesh.
Here is the clavicle-snapped wish,
the aorta's opened valves, the leap
thought makes at the synaptic gap.
Here is the adrenaline rush you crave,
that inexorable flight, that insane puncture
into heat and blood. And I dare you to finish
what you've started. Because here, Bullet,
here is where I complete the word you bring
hissing through the air, here is where I moan
the barrel's cold esophagus, triggering
my tongue's explosives for the rifling I have
inside of me, each twist of the round
spun deeper, because here, Bullet,
here is where the world ends, every time.
posted by homunculus at 11:28 AM on January 6, 2007 [1 favorite]


That is a pretty stunning poem.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:51 AM on January 6, 2007


Thanks, homunculus. Great post.

I'm reminded of an anecdote I heard (well, probably read here on Metafilter) about the power of poetry to present reality. Back in the '60s, when the Gemini astronauts were sending back these amazing photographs and writing about what it was like to walk in space, someone said something to the effect of "I can't wait until they send poets to space. Then we'll know what it's really like up there."
posted by John of Michigan at 12:32 PM on January 6, 2007


I read the poem yesterday on BoingBoing and I'm really surprised that the official Amazon review considers it valuable only as a reflection of our times- if the rest of the book is anything like this poem, then it is good as poetry too.
posted by Oobidaius at 1:10 PM on January 6, 2007


Turner is an amazing poet. Thanks homonculus.
posted by eustacescrubb at 1:55 PM on January 6, 2007


Somewhat reminds me of Yusef Komunyakaa's Vietnam poetry, at least "Here, Bullet."
posted by bardic at 4:43 PM on January 6, 2007


(By "somewhat," I mean it seems like the guy has tons of talent for being 23. Some of his metaphors make me wince and think he's really over-reaching, but this is easily better than most of the stuff coming out of MFA-level workshops. I hope he keeps at it.)
posted by bardic at 4:51 PM on January 6, 2007


Bardic, where does it say he's only 23? This article says he's 39:

The book is full of powerful images of death and dying, but Turner, 39, says he doesn't see it as an angry screed against President Bush or U.S. military policy. "
posted by kid ichorous at 10:43 PM on January 6, 2007


Thanks for this homunculus.
posted by nickyskye at 11:40 PM on January 6, 2007


I saw him read with Komunyakaa, Jorie Graham, and Gary Snyder at the Chicago Humanities Festival last year. Quite good; he gave particularly intense readings of "Here, Bullet" and another standout poems, "2000 lbs." (The weight of a roadside bomb).
posted by Iridic at 12:41 AM on January 7, 2007


Bardic, where does it say he's only 23? This article says he's 39

Wow, you're right. Reading too fast.
posted by bardic at 2:20 AM on January 7, 2007


turner's poems are stunning.

might i suggest going here to read (and listen) to more work.

ps. "from the fishouse" is a wonderful archive that deserves some attention.
posted by ronv at 7:05 AM on January 7, 2007


there's something about trench art.

the poem you quoted... wow.
posted by 3.2.3 at 12:10 PM on January 7, 2007


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