{Canudos}

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March 16, 2011 by The Citron Review

by SJ Fowler

we have shaken hands before, but never spoken. He says his name, Amorim Conselheiros. We shake hands again. I smile; this is all he will get from me. I am not ready to return to that life. Time is passing. I feel the imitation of fear. I have seen torture, but not having suffered under it, still after all my maturing, it holds too little sway on me.

*

We are not a drought, we need not an artificial lake. I have a book I would like to sell you, he says. It will make up your mind.

*

He ruptures into a fantastic beam of contentment at the breaking of my silence. He whips back his long grey coat; its buttons stitched in blue thread, and from within produces a book as deep as his ribcage. It is old, terribly old and he has judged well, for I am aghast. He has taken this from the Museum. How? I stutter. He waves away my hand and I straighten fiercely at his touch. He begins his patter to divert the physical immanence of my retribution. His knuckles crack.

 

 

SJ Fowler (1983) has had poetry published in over 70 journals & magazines, and is the author of two collections, Fights (Veer books 2011) and Red Museum (Knives Forks & Spoons press 2011). He is a member of the Writers forum poetry group, and an employee of the British Museum. He edits the Maintenant interview series for 3am magazine introducing contemporary European poets. www.sjfowlerpoetry.com www.maintenant.co.uk

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