Iowa Writes

Riding the Horse's Bones

The dream still heavy, recollection's architecture rearranged: this is growing old, where it starts. With a blank upon waking, a vacant lot, weeds in sunlight—where? Twelve thousand miles: a new building stands under acacias, displacing the science hall I'd wandered as a child—seeing fetuses floating deep-eyed in dusty bottles, rainforest birds in bright sleeping rows, their nomenclatures tagged to feet delicate and inscrutable as Chinese writing; a horse skeleton.

Waking up in Iowa, it's the older building, the horse, that remain: in the spaces between its fenceposts of bones, the uncorrupted sharpness of wind from a distant field.

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

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Rowena Torrevillas teaches nonfiction writing and transnational literature at the University of Iowa.  She writes poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, for which she has received the Philippines' National Book Award.

This piece originally appeared in Volume 5, Number 1 of 100 Words, a journal published by the University of Iowa's International Writing Program between 1993 and 1998. Each piece in the journal had to be 100 words or fewer, and each issue had a theme. This issue's theme was "On Memory."

This page was first displayed
on March 23, 2008

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