Irregular Numbers of Beasts and Birds
by Cecil Helman

ISBN: 0-9744503-5-9
Perfect Bound, $12.00
Publication Date: March 2006
5 x 7 inches, 102 pages

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Irregular Numbers of Beasts and Birds is a collection of portraits, odes, and ruminations about life’s major and minor disasters and recoveries. In vivid, unsentimental prose, Helman draws individual resonance from universal themes, and a sense of shared humanity that is drawn from the infinitesimally specific. Helman emphasizes the cyclical nature of life — the volume is divided into four sections based on seasons — as well as the human tendency to repeat the “same old stories” over and over again. At the same time, he reminds us that every lived moment is truly its own.

From Irregular Numbers of Beasts and Birds...

The Flag of Our Country

On the flag of our country, a black barking dog. Painted on the side of that dog, a large map. On the southwestern corner of that map, the outline of a bay. Moored calmly within that bay, a three-masted schooner. Embroidered on the sails of that schooner, the outline of a man. Dressed all in black. Gripped in the left hand of that man, a leash. Snarling and straining at the end of that leash, a brown dog. A wild and angry brown dog. Barking, always barking, the anthem of our proud country.

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