The Poetry of Artist-in-Residence Bradley Harrison

Bradley Harrison reads his poems in Better Farm's Art Barn July 27.
Bradley Harrison is a graduate of the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas in Austin. His work can be found in New American Writing, The Los Angeles Review, Forklift Ohio, Gulf Coast, Poetry Northeast, Hunger Mountain, New Orleans Review, Best New Poets 2012 and elsewhere. His chapbook Diorama of a People, Burning is available from Ricochet Editions (2012).

Bradley spent the month of July at Better Farm through the betterArts residency program, which seeks to provide an opportunity for creative exploration and growth to artists, writers, and musicians within the context of Better Farm's dynamic environment.

Below is one of the poems Bradley wrote while at the farm. The piece utilizes words lifted from blog entries penned by Sustainability Education students at Better Farm during Bradley's stay. 

Barred Rock Ameraucana
To break I became a farm
of flowers.
To make from my fabric
a lampshade
I stumbled into woods
on rough cut legs—
Fermentation of loosestrife —
My pretty bit drowning—
Such out rung petals
in the cloth I used
in the room
with the rundown furniture,
rustic in the rinse
of handmade light.
I had hoped it much darker,
this handful of glass growing
deep in the bark,
an hour lastly
straining the free-floating
yeasts and the birds
with a tendency to vigil
the hillside, another
kind of clearing
cut just
to the nails.

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Nicole Caldwell

Nicole Caldwell is a self-taught environmentalist, green-living savant and sustainability educator with more than a decade of professional writing experience. She is also the co-founder of Better Farm and president of betterArts. Nicole’s work has been featured in Mother Earth News, Reader’s Digest, Time Out New York, and many other publications. Her first book, Better: The Everyday Art of Sustainable Living, is due out this July through New Society Publishers.