By Eric Gamalinda

Eric Gamalinda's Amigo struggle is a beautiful meditation on id and the methods we hook up with ourselves, with one another, and with the realm: Grief is a country of every person a rustic without borderlines. Gamalinda's voice soars and swoops via staggering, heartbreaking language, providing convenience amid the grief all of us proportion. In Gamalinda's poems, we're on their own, jointly.

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Example text

It’s old now, toothless like the gypsy selling raw almonds in the market square. Wait long enough and even she will disappear. Por fin, this town will be left to us dogs, and we’ll scamper around whether it’s siesta time or not, and piss in bars, and fight 49 over food, and share our fleas, and brag all night to the moon how many bitches will remember us long after we’re gone. 50 The Skin of War The world like the body has grown old and tired of love. But love has nowhere else to go. It dies somewhere in the body, quiet and unresisting, the way the elderly die in Rajasthan, a place you leave only by dying.

Not my mother’s young sorrow, my sisters’ life 54 of water, my father’s solitude, my brothers’ cities occupied and broken. Not these words, though they weigh me down. Not the mirrors of the moon, be they false oceans, all illusion. Not even love, whose October grows ever more faint in yours. The shattered Thursdays, the stories we refuse to surrender, the wounded and those who wound—when I take my turn I will name each one, no paradise will be so boundless for all that I will name. 55 The aim of art is to prepare a person for death, to plough and harrow his soul, rendering it capable of turning to good.

The messengers still keep coming. His mailbox still gets plump with mail. Nothing gets returned to sender. No one eats the roses. 63 Burning the Body, after Tarkovsky Our bodies are a sign that time once made its home in us, we are connected to time the way the earth wears the orbit of the moon, and light is how time communicates, feeling is memory distilled to its purest form: don’t you remember how the evening wouldn’t let go of all that blue, how your tongue woke salt from its sleep? In the space made sacred by bone and steel, does the cold still offend you, what is the velocity of silence, does your night correspond to our night, are we foreign now, do the things we touch turn to light, and is this how we feel the presence of time, not by remembering but by touching?

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