A Little Tell of Broken Bricks

All things written feel a little terrified at first

as though come to destroy us.

Mary Ruefle


A Rumour

ran through town on broken legs

that went something like this—


he veered off course

averted a school for boys

dropped his bombs into the Med instead


embroidered and embellished in each telling

they knew, their father’s fathers knew

he was the son of a local Jew


he chose the sea

embroidered and embellished with each shelling

to drop his bombs on a school of fish


good man, good man you, they said,

they said he was a Jew

embroidered and embellished with each telling




has a room: a stand-in for the cinema

its leaders, I’m told, are kind and gentle souls

who wouldn’t think to hurt a tank

even if it looked them right in the eye


I know what you’re thinking—

who would want to hurt a tank —

but no, he says, not true, tanks, too,

have their Achilles’ heel

chinks in the armor


Aim for the turret, he tells me, aim for the eye

that’s where you’ll find

the projectionist

who makes it all come real




a Saida hillside silently destroyed by bombs on film

projected from 120mm acetate


he ponders, is it plastic or plastique?



A Voice Reads This

“One week following Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in 1982, a pilot in the Israeli air force named HagaiTamir flew over the site of the Saida Secondary School for Boys and refused an order to bomb it.”

(NegarAzimi, NY Review of Books, June 26, 2013)



Two Gloved Hands

there were no fingerprints on the last breath

of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

as the cockpit existentialist crashed into the Med


hands sketch a rudimentary

school\house   paper               air/plane

sepia-tinged eyes manipulate the said family photographs

all for the sake of having

gone to war


(and lifting weights the paper plane was shot into

receding frames of past and passing memories

until there was nothing left to tell but this to them

who lived to see it)


The Intimation of an Explosion That Approximates an Abstract Doughnut

like generous and meditative shots of shelling


visualize—the sound of drones

whistling Dixie


picture—a nameless anxiety

a persistent half-memory, half-life, say,

a story


the camera lingers on the story


two humans either embracing

propping each other up

falling into each other’s arms, or in slow-motion


punching pushing lunging fighting to the death



We Met in Rome

a dim-lit bar far from home: an interview of nothing but

afterwards, afterthoughts, matters of fact


he was an architect, of light and cloud perspectives


I said, I don’t much care for planes as war machines, besides

I said, I’d rather be a bird


his hands flew off the page




all I wanted was a poem

about something that was broken, about

something I wouldn’t have to rebuild, or put together in its place


I took aim and hit the dirt where there was nothing there but

a little tell

of broken bricks

Antony Di Nardo

Antony Di Nardo is a Canadian poet, editor, and teacher. He is the author of Alien, Correspondent (Brick Books) and Soul on Standby (Exile Editions). His most recent collection of poetry, Roaming Charges (Brick Books), was launched in Beirut earlier this year. It continues his commitment to a lyric of “wry seriousness undercut by the slyly hilarious” with the poet as a clear-eyed witness. His work appears internationally in journals and anthologies, has been translated into French and Italian, and can also be read in the inaugural issue of Rusted Radishes. As a former teacher of English literature at International College, he divides his time between Beirut and Sutton, Quebec where he is editor of Tibbits Hill Press publishing chapbooks and broadsides.

Post Tags
Share Post
No comments