Julia Gordon-Bramer will be one of three featured readers at the •chance operations• reading at the Tavern of Fine Arts, 313 Belt Avenue, on Monday, November 25.
Also featured will be Amy K. Genova and Henry Goldkamp.
Doors open at 7:30 p.m.; admission is FREE.
Julia Gordon-Bramer is readying her book, Fixed Stars Govern a Life: Decoding Sylvia Plath for its release in the spring with Stephen F. Austin State University Press. If you'd like to be on her email list for more information, please flag her down, or write her at wordgirl @ nighttimes.com. When the Plath work slows down she intends to try to publish some more poetry. She was most recently voted St. Louis' Best Local Poet by the Riverfront Times.
Maybe I was a little bit
high, but it made sense
then: the comforting
smooth slick of glittering
orange-yellow paint beneath
bare feet, the double
lines the width of my stride.
That fat black expanse of lanes
stretching and long into the dark, and me,
there, equidistant. Ten p.m.
Cars lit my way from ahead, from behind.
My soles protected from the gravel, glass,
metal bottle caps of the edge,
from the summer sticky heat and burning
blackness of tar, from the dark
reedy grasses breeding bleeding mosquitoes and murderers, unseen.
Horns honked, cars swerved, people said,
“Man, she’s tripped out!” and through
rolled down windows flicked lit cigarette butts.
Fourteen. This was how I walked, looking
down at my dirty toes, looking for somewhere
to go. The night swallowed everything in
asphalt, but my clear direction: not right
not left, not North, South, East or West.
I wasn’t anywhere. I was
safe in the center of it all.
-- Julia Gordon-Bramer
Note: "Highway Walk" won honorable mention in the St. Louis Writer's Guild 2011 contest.