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Gates of Bone

by Greg Bem

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Field recordings taken from: Deer Park, WA; Lake Wenatchee, WA; OpenAI ChatGPT Android App.


In the town where I settled,
my bones were aching into strange glyphs,
a language of rain and hail,
crossed shadows from floorboards to ceiling tiles,
yellow light it spoke of lashes,
yellowed walls made from smoke and phantoms,
the rest of the town quiet in absence,
my only dream a tickling hypnosis,
until the aches began and there was the stretching of the skin,
and the splintering of the structure into great and grizzled walls,
the realms of undercurrents of mimics, of barks

or was it a chanting of some strange communication,
a goblin chat or a strange existential tongue play
the way those shadows braced and squabbled,
almost ticklish but undoubtedly a doubling,
a doppelganger brow furl or a wretched mild coalescence,
or plainly coercion, the phantom’s touch a form of intimacy,
a gentle scrawl of accommodation and horror,

a breath of symmetry and something uncanny,
the uplift of the furs and the unidentified stones settling into position,
place for placement nearly cruel in its sickness,
a drone for the bones that settled as they cry into a pillow of dust,
transitions that arrive with a foresight of the torturer,
and forward momentum into new shapes and future language,

a sort of maniacal breathing as what comes forward is more cruelty
it is of the hammer and of that which must be splintered,
the shredding of the passes through flesh and abysses,
the reckoning of a fate of passing by,
and gruesome ecologies staring you in the twitched lines of sight,

eyes as jewels without color, carrying strong frequencies,
we are muffled into the listening, as the wall forms,
and in some small inch there is the question of the face,
and reaction, and if a grin awaits us should we find ourselves blinking open,
while regrade and regression may be the only out,
after the foul sense of being Cascadian on this edge,

necromantic dancing erupts only to return,
and it returns with a sense of death and rebirth,
and precipitation, and foresight into seeing what is next:

the dead can dance,
the dead can come to feast,
twirling in the shuffling atrium, on the precipice,
as the structures settle into the moist earth,
and a carved presence shows fully the bitterness of a bitter birth.


released February 19, 2024


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Greg Bem

Poet and librarian based in Cascadia. All works are created using field recordings.

Inspired by noise, ambient electronica, including the work of KMRU, Claire Rousay, Gas, Thomas Köner, Merzbow, Sonic Youth, Clark, Tim Hecker, Oneohtrix Point Never, Einstürzende Neubauten, and Rafael Toral. ... more

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