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The Little Review
Making No Compromises With the Public Taste
Poem for Friday and Late Cherry Blossoms 
Friday, 8th May 2020 01:16 am

By Oliver Baez Bendorf

What still grows in winter?
Fingernails of witches and femmes,
green moss on river rocks,
lit with secrets... I let myself
go near the river but not
the railroad: this is my bargain.
Water boils in a kettle in the woods
and I can hear the train grow louder
but I also can't, you know?
Then I'm shaving in front of an
unbreakable mirror while a nurse
watches over my shoulder.
Damn. What still grows in winter?
Lynda brought me basil I crushed
with my finger and thumb just to
smell the inside of a thing. So
I go to the river but not the rail-
road, think I'll live another year.
The river rock dig into my shoulders
like a lover who knows I don’t want
power. I release every muscle against
the rock and I give it all my warmth.
                            Snow shakes
onto my chest quick as table salt.
Branches above me full of pine needle
whips: when the river rock is done
with me, I could belong to the evergreen.
Safety is a rock I throw into the river.
My body, ready. Don’t even think
a train run through this town anymore.


On Thursday my computer finally finished synchronizing everything from my Google Drive and backup hard drive, so I could get back to my photo scanning project once I was done writing various things. I'm about a quarter of a way through 1994, the point where I have to take apart albums to get out the photos to scan, which will keep them safe from plastic pages but I wonder whether I'll ever look at the physical photos again. We took a walk because it was gorgeous out -- no bunnies but the deer were back in the same spot in the woods -- and ate early so we could have a Zoom family call that ended up including my parents, Adam, my Uncle Mickey, his children Felicia, Allison, and Garrett, and some spouses and children wandering through.

Plus I talked to my sister, Nicole, on the phone. Blindspot was back in the evening, sadly having killed off a character I really liked (and I'm not sure I'm in the mood for a giant government conspiracy, I miss the first season when it was specific storylines about Jane and Kurt. Afterward, we watched the first episode of Hollywood, in large part for Patti LuPone and not the male nudity though there was plenty of eye candy, but I can already tell the show romanticizes both a Hollywood era (no racism, really?) and prostitution, so I'm not sure how long watching the series will last. I feel like I really did not properly enjoy the cherry blossoms this spring, so here are some photos from back when were still visiting local parks:








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