The Manhattan Review
The Manhattan Review
Established 1980

Archive > Vol. 14 no. 2


Heather Phillipson

1960s Monochrome Hollywood Paraphernalia ($47, collection only) (0:27:03 > 0:35:58)


•     1 sizeable hoard of defunct birds
(some deader than others). Includes an
owl (unusually rigid) and anything else
you would want to see in flight in spring
(mounted, in a parlor). All come with tiny
bones walloped into a museum of artistic
poses (if you lean in you can hear innards or
the sky curdle steeply). In addition, a period
of hurly-burly just beginning. Anticipation
that just kind of hovers overhead like an
arched eyebrow or a buzzard before supper.
A kind of rigorous love. Also: shadows
(what they are and what goes on in them).
Darkness, generally. (A lot of clouds
bumping around the periphery.) Undertones.
Overtones. Violin strings (lightly scratched)
in upper registers. Blanched hair of a
certain period. Tiny gloss eyes pinned in
the middle distance. Miscellaneous beaks
and a man’s mouth, all in nipping distance.
1 devilishly wet December to accompany
a tight-fitting office, unlikely to change
(unless papers get shuffled). Plus: Pale-faced
loon from motel foyer (comes with
upturned collar, undernourished, bearing
sandwiches). Could I. . . uh. . . do you. . .
uh. . . here’s the. . . uh. . . (classic examples
of awkward speech patterns). 1 little-frequented
plot of mud. 1 woman’s voice
(disembodied). Sturdy rain (evidently trying
to prove something). My trusty umbrella.