The Brooklyn Rail

SEPT 2023

All Issues
SEPT 2023 Issue

from Aquarius


Summer on Cankarjeva

—passing among each holy place as decade, pollen, a world fashioned gently

Given, not a second page, who will lift the emperor’s cup

Given to mean the barge, the River Queen of Shikoku knotting and unknotting horse hair

Given across friendship

—a lamp persuades: come closer, will you

—a lamp to your face: Shkar and his brother Marwan with whom I, for their holiday, will study a
million spellings

—a million spellings

—route, if I follow faithfully to completion, nears a barn

—who wills his own cursed embroidered scripture: Sutoku in exile having plucked
chrysanthemum from its tapestry

—a throne having been ascended, what beast sheds

All the way up falls silent

Made to sacrifice in order

—thought, counterclockwise: I love you, I love you not, I love you

Gemini New Moon, a call which is a real

—guttural beauty will

—glottal stop

—the romantic who sighs contentedly at the café

Thuận’s Chinatown in Paris

—who will approach us and ask if we have the time

—standing-room, bullfrog, golden hour

In The Passion of Anna

—cherry wine in thimble tumblers, a flash

—debate: I despise him, it could almost sink the whole island

Ullmann: I understand

I understand it, too, Andreas; let’s go to sleep as snow sleeps

Who doesn’t blink will cry: help, help, why can’t you help me

Cœur d’hirondelle

—the barn which engulfs itself at dawn, the beach pebble clunking, the aging horse in all
directions, an event’s extended trauma, misery, O


—le rêve et le rêve souffrant

—seven peaceful words in total procession

Feast of Adoration

Lion Dance

Omikoshi swaying mid-song

—R. who tattoos her face at the last minute

—a throne abandons passage

—palanquin borne in two rituals: chest binding, seat at the taiko abandoned

—taken to Ngô Gia Tự Street

—a static report overwhelms and there draws a crowd

—a perpetual phrase

—a leaking roof

Sontag who will show her palm: listen, I don’t want to say this twice or Sontag, in a little while,
is how you stop dragging me around

—run into your wife at Food Lion, 801 Hethwood Boulevard

—no, I’m alone; I’ll be home soon, don’t call again

—the truth will be a feather so light

—plus NBC News next door

—Associated Press on the Fist of February

District 10 in Saigon, aghast or less


—open to life as La Vita Nuova

—openly weeping at vegetables in Mercator, Dalmatinova ulica 4A, 1000 Ljubljana: broccoli, a
brutal yes

Naruhodo: then

Whose tattoo will sun our beholding Raise the Red Lantern

Beatrice and, at her death, Absolute

Will per Aristotle will crater

—animal sense

—Gong Li who will star

—all eyes on Lantern Four: Coral, Cloud, Joy’s consolation the master has so willed his self onto

—who will be met and ignored: the broad face of thought I will lift, I will protect

Jasmine in bloom



—shopping on Tuesday, a dollied film as collective

Zamyatin’s We

Rigid undoing verisimilitude

Veritas: the riots in us talk to each other


—a clean storm which has been building on reason built on syllables; what then, if all the ships
are taken down by orcas

—what then up north wafting

—what then joss, foil, paper cut into a square coaxes: come back to me

—what then disengages animal from Nghê

Negligent as a low screen

—what then will be worth guarding

—relative or Absolute: the wielded dagger

Lucia, put it down, we beg in Act III

Scene: what then will

—heat even to the gums

—heat after heat palpable

—pillow whispers between newlyweds: how could you take so long

—the sea pinkly close nudges up

Total records of language on a hard turtle shell

—the royal exams’ penultimate riddle

—hearing, not earth, arches at the Temple of Medicine where one sister offers

—“what then”

—the furious monk still furious

—a lute behind smoke

—a peony on the last night of Hội Gióng, the sister who will scrub no man’s shoe

—who will never show his face

—the gardener with the face of a tiger: upon myself is a lake

—the casted net and


What then would Confucius condemn to amethyst, eggplant, black rice, bruises


—the purple cabbage

Delphinium, lupine

—the shy purple toad

—what will she wear

—someone rows us across; there will be rumors of silk

Forbidden caresses

Everywhere the sighing

—seams: naruhodo

Galaxy indigo

Gamma ray

—the two poles barely touch

—who will hike her skirt

—a sensible heel


Delta, the gray pasture will

—remainder: SAY IT

—and this we are a sweet wish said for no want, books and cinema, a mended shirt sleeve, the
horse’s dismounted brass plate; pleasure reveals a note after seven years, here I go, heart open to
the fountain which will not kill me


Sophia Terazawa

Sophia Terazawa is the author of Anon and Winter Phoenix, both with Deep Vellum. Her favorite color is purple.


The Brooklyn Rail

SEPT 2023

All Issues