Stunning Student Prose

02Dec09

Irrigation Ditch by Laura McPhee from River of No Return

I have many stunning students, but every once in a while I read something so terrific it makes me shiver.  Adam Bedell’s writing glitters with passion.  I love my job at Hofstra University.  I adore my students.  Working with this quality of prose, I believe there can’t be a better job out there.

From Bedell’s “The Graveyard Lies Like an Inuit”

We had been walking over an eroded bridge in the woods by Shu Swamp.  A stream trickled underneath us, a canopy formed above—branches in the night hung like lanky piano fingers.  The sky was deep dark blue with white mountain clouds puffing past the moon, sending eclipses of light between the branches of the canopy.  I swear I could hear flutes singing in the wind and crickets, crickets, crickets.  She nudged her shirt up, enticing me to finish.  Her body peered out like moonlight and I shadowed it with lunatic kisses.

After, we floated on our backs in the stream with the bottom of our feet each touching, one pointing to the left, the other to the right.  Our knees bended, making an oval between us — a giant womb; I saw Triton rising upward, blowing his wreathed horn, our precious…Lily said something real strange.  “If we have enough love, we could raise a god,” then she pushed up out of the stream bed, water dripping down her legs.  She pulled a leech off, and I jumped out of the water, panicked—she laughed as we hugged…dripping wet, drops sliding off our bodies and pelting the stream.

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