A Cloud of Witnesses
by Jason Stumpf

ISBN: 978-1-935835-01-1
Perfect Bound, $13.00
Publication Date: December 2010
5 x 8 inches, 62 pages

Individuals: Order directly from Small Press Distribution,
1-800-869-7553 ; or Amazon.com.

Bookstores: Order through Small Press Distribution.

A Cloud of Witnesses is a verse-novel that is not in verse and isn't a novel. In this collection, the reader fumbles through the murk of life in search of sense and of the other. The reader will misplace objects and learn trivia about venomous snakes, as well as come upon love and write their family histories in Morse code. Each poem is a chapter born of misremembered plots and of an affinity for the many texts it echoes.

This book takes place in aftermath. Imagination and memory intertwine. A vow of love is a confrontation of death where "To love someone you must dream about them dying." A Cloud of Witnesses is for those who live and travel in books — for those who dwell in Victorian landscapes, those who have written letters by hand, watchers of old films, those who get lost but continue, those who get lost on purpose. It's enough to warm a cold, postmodern heart.

From A Cloud of Witnesses...

An Encounter

The apples in the schoolyard are for no one. That is how I know your heart returns you. Because the sharp-tongued stranger does not hurry I waited in the clearing, the place where I had left you. I wanted it to cure you not to keep you, though now I know a lamb caught in a river does not bleat, does not swim, glides south, drifts under. That is how I know your heart returns you. The clearing was littered with debris when I came upon it but the storm had finally passed. The stranger never came. Return me to the river so I may undo.

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