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Big Other Reading Series, #11

Mel Bosworth reads David Peak’s “Perpetual Motion”.

Perpetual Motion by David Peak

Somewhere beyond:
there is a city of broad-shouldered children,
with narrow streets, jagged and slicing through
the walls, like frosting in a cake.

These broad-shouldered children
spend their days in the darkness
below the cakes crust,
mining the earth for orange-tinted jewels.

They return each night—
as the sky pales and hardens dark—
empty-handed, teeth caked with soot.

Their eyes glow orange like hot coals,
swell and hiss with each breath, with each
swell of their sallow chests.

And they drink strange amber drinks at night,
suck on strange sour candies,
in the cantinas, arm-in-arm with other soot-faced children,
dancing to the stomping of chair legs against
hardwood floors, hands clapping,
songs with lyrics whose meaning has been lost to time,
their glowing orange eyes clacking
together like expert-shot marbles.

David Peak is the author of a novel, The Rocket’s Red Glare (Leucrota Press), a book of poems, Surface Tension (BlazeVOX Books), and two chapbooks, Museum of Fucked (Warm Milk Press), and Dreams from the Darklands (Mud Luscious Press). He lives in New York City. Visit him HERE.

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John Madera is the author of Nervosities (Anti-Oedipus Press, 2024). His other fiction is published in Conjunctions, Salt Hill, The &Now Awards 2: The Best Innovative Writing, and many other journals. His nonfiction is published in American Book Review, Bookforum, The Review of Contemporary Fiction, Rain Taxi: Review of Books, The Believer, The Brooklyn Rail, and many other venues. Recipient of an M.F.A. in Literary Arts from Brown University, New York State Council on the Arts awardee John Madera lives in New York City, Rhizomatic and manages and edits Big Other.

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