Jose Perez Beduya earned a BFA in Painting from the University of the Philippines and an MFA in Creative Writing from Cornell University. He has received a fellowship to the Santa Fe Art Institute. His poems have been published or are forthcoming in High Chair, Beloit Poetry Journal, and Boston Review. His poetry chapbook Seem was published by High Chair press in Manila. He lives in Ithaca with his wife Jessica and their cat Pablo. He is currently working on a full-length collection of poems.

Four Poems by Jose Perez Beduya


Specter of an Ever After

The bodies pulled by dogs

Substitute white gloves for flowers

In the story that expands with the blank

Between cut limbs

Carbonized teeth

From the thicket to address us


Restored Print

Itís said shadows do the work

For the electrified city.

Strips of lives. Elastic
With souls still attached

To an ever-receding
Rectangular

Hole of home.

Shadows tending towards the horizon
As shadows tending towards fat grass.

Why do I distrust

Never been filmed before?

Uncaged symbols churning
Brackish waters of the heart.

Quotation marks and children
Go quietly missing.

In this newly minted version I wish

My fear could travel far with you.


Signal to Noise

The bridge as we

Speak it
The safety of the air

And then speaking

No longer needed
Air

The bridge into

Another country
The wind-blasted inner

Ear

In search of a man
Only to find

A name

The commentator
Coughs on air

The sun

Into what shines
As absence

Shapes its sons

And errors eclipse
The reflecting pond

A hospital quiet wears

Its pure white gloves
Into our everyday lives

Tightening gauze

Over the rows
The morning has flown

By again in fragments

We roll the car window
And breathe into.

[First published in High Chair]


Dispersal Chorus

We are happy we                           sing we destroy

                      Time in bed

In the dark feel                   for the lips and trace

The last word formed

There. Awe-struck

          Rubble inside the mouth.

Gargle gravel to speak only          the truth, the thread and mineral

                      Ore of Good.

What face doesnít look up when itís buried

          Alive?

Attend now, angels, to voices giving way

                                                       Entering the wind-folds.

Already the dark rubble pours

           And grows in the shape of a bell.