Bridge & Swimmer

By Forrest Gander b. 1956 Forrest Gander
Our eye goes past the hieroglyphic tree to the swimmer
carving a wake in the water. And almost to the railroad bridge
from which the swimmer might have dived. Then, as though
come to the end of its tether,
our gaze returns, pulling toward the blemish
on the surface of the print. An L-shaped chemical dribble,
it sabotages the scene’s transparence
and siphons off its easy appeal.
 
At the same time, the blemish
joins together the realms
of seer and swimmer
in our experience of plunging
into and out of the image.

Forrest Gander, “Bridge & Swimmer” from Eye Against Eye. Copyright © 2005 by Forrest Gander. Reprinted by permission of New Directions Publishing Corporation.

Source: Eye Against Eye (New Directions Publishing Corporation, 2001)

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Poet Forrest Gander b. 1956

POET’S REGION U.S., New England

Subjects Living, The Mind, Activities, Sports & Outdoor Activities, Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Arts & Sciences, Photography & Film

Poetic Terms Free Verse

 Forrest  Gander

Biography

Born in California’s Mojave Desert, poet Forrest Gander grew up in Virginia and attended the College of William & Mary, where he majored in geology. After receiving an MA in literature from San Francisco State University, Gander moved to Mexico, then to Arkansas, where his poetry—informed by his knowledge of geology—turned its attention to landscape as foreground or source of action.

Gander’s books of poetry include Eye Against . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, The Mind, Activities, Sports & Outdoor Activities, Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Arts & Sciences, Photography & Film

POET’S REGION U.S., New England

Poetic Terms Free Verse

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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