The Study of Surfaces, the Study of Curves

by Emma Bolden

Here I am in this room mapping this room. I am making it flat so it will fit on paper. I use shades of blue as a translation of space. On a map all griefs are standard, as are desires. A curve is just one reason why a mountain is a mountain. A line is a notation of all forces and magnitudes. For instance: I am a series of dots. For instance: you are a thick backslash. A failure of language. Here in this room I am finding this room is more useful than language or failure. Here there are walls wearing paint and light. Each wall is a plane meeting another plane and at all of the right angles. Here I am in this room, and here in this room, that will always be true. I am trying to tell you. If you continue to seek definitions, there will only be temperatures. There will only be rising. Nothing will be or will have its inverse. Here in this room, this room will always be fact.

Emma Bolden’s first full-length collection of poetry, Maleficae, was published by GenPop Books in 2013. Her second full-length collection, medi(t)ations, is forthcoming from Noctuary Press. She is the author of four poetry chapbooks: How to Recognize a Lady, published as part of Edge by Edge, the third in Toadlily Press’ Quartet Series; The Mariner’s Wife, published by Finishing Line Press; The Sad Epistles, published by Dancing Girl Press; and This Is Our Hollywood, published in volume two of The Chapbook.