Encountering these three prose poems by Christopher Citro and Dustin Nightingale, originally appearing in Bear Review, Vol 6, Issue 1, now with the addition of voice, piano and ambient sound expands the space implied within the poems in pleasant and interesting ways that suggest new possibilities for the expressive power of piano improvisation from verse collaborations. Within our brains, and within this new dimension, the poems’ tonalities, as well as the textual valences in the text originally flattened by the prose poem as a leveling form, decompress and flip light switches no poem can keep lit powered by page or screen alone. Citro’s partner Sarah Ruhlen plays the piano here, and she lovingly extends a bridge between these poets’ words and across the listener’s corpus callosum. Take a listen while you read and you’ll hear and see what I mean.
Christopher Citro is the author of If We Had a Lemon We'd Throw It and Call That the Sun (Elixir Press, 2021), winner of the 2019 Antivenom Poetry Award, and The Maintenance of the Shimmy-Shammy (Steel Toe Books, 2015). His awards include a 2018 Pushcart Prize for Poetry. He lives in Syracuse, New York.
Dustin Nightingale is the author of Ghost Woodpecker (BatCat Press, 2018). His poetry has been or will be published in journals such as The Florida Review, The American Journal of Poetry, new ohio review, Cimarron Review, and Coal Hill Review. He lives in Hartford, Connecticut.