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Excerpt of a Longer Recording

by Bob Hicok
Illustration by Katie McDonough

Excerpt of a Longer Recording

Bob Hicok
16 Snaps

A man loves silence so much, to talk to him,
you sit alone in a room
and have your say, leave the room,
which he enters and listens
to your thoughts, replies
and leaves, you enter again
and listen to the memory
of air, reply
and leave. I’ve known him
my whole life and we’ve yet to finish
our first conversation. There’s time

to hold this morning
against my chest, the wind
and the slowly moved trees, before action,
a struck hammer, turned key.
When it rained, at the edge

of the woods, every
thirty feet or so, people
stepped away from the trees
into the field and stood
the duration of the storm, like sculptures
of themselves remembering how to exist
within nature, whose footprints
I found and listened to
afterward, in the noise
of sunlight, resting awhile
against one and another
set of marks in the earth, which bears now
the record of my ear
at regular intervals, so if I am tracked,
what kind of animal
would you think I am, who moves
this way.

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