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Gary Percesepe

Dead Poets

Dead Poets

The world is ugly
And the people are sad

The night was filled with voices and signals. Roads not taken reappeared. Driving past the anniversary of my death I passed a chipmunk taking a dump in tall fescue by the side of the road. This wasn’t morning, it was a dream of morning, I thought, slapping my forehead. Dogs to decades, my half-life’s as crumbling infrastructure to her! Breakfast was wild, she later observed, R rated thanks to the neighbor who ankled over. It’s only yesterday but already seems to be the middle of next week. I remembered the neighbor. She lost her husband during the divorce. It was cold in the big house. Pipes blinked open and poured out gravy. Great, I thought, the rest is gravy. Basement life seemed to suit the neighbor. You’re a gleam of sun on fresh snow, I wanted to say. Sawdust piled up around my best intentions. Night found Socrates buzzed but not drunk, I recalled from the Symposium, alone under the ponderous stars. His head splintered by a thousand thoughts.

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Gary Percesepe is the author of seven books, including Itch (Pure Slush Press, 2014) a collection of flash fiction, Falling (Pure Slush Press, 2014), a poetry collection, and What May Have Been: Letters of Jackson Pollock and Dori G (Cervena Brava Press, 2010), an epistolary novel co-authored with Susan Tepper.  He is Associate Editor at New World Writing (formerly Mississippi Review), a former assistant fiction editor at Antioch Review, and a Contributor at The Nervous Breakdown. His fic­tion, poetry, essays, reviews, and inter­views have appeared in UCity ReviewStory Quarterly, N + 1, Salon, Mississippi Review, The Millions, Brevity, PANK, Westchester Review, Antioch Review, and other places. Percesepe teaches at Fordham University in the Bronx, and lives in White Plains, New York. He seeks representation for a new novel titled Leaving Telluride, a darkly comic novel about male fantasy and arrested desire across time—“Sideways gone skiing in Telluride, Colorado.”


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