The next year, or perhaps the year after, I was there with Karen in the spring. I had Chris Nealon’s book The Joyous Age in my bag, & we read some of that aloud. The ideas that so warm & so harm humankind were sprawled around us: students making out, a building’s altitude of cloud, the sun, & the conceptions of the sun, the moneyed school like love with bordered grounds, the sound of verse read aloud between friends. Conrad’s hair was getting longer then. He’d vowed to let it grow until the wars came to an end. Our books may one day be composed by kissing his bare scalp.


by Dana Ward, from the forthcoming issue of Washington Square.