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Gettysburg Review
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Essays

Autumn 1994 Edition Selections

“Scenes from the Outsider Art Fair”

by Eric Torgersen

Across the bottom of the outside fold is one more fragment of definition, from the protean Jean Dubuffet: “Art does not lie down in the bed that is made for it: it runs away as soon as one says its name; it loves to be incognito. Its best moments are when it forgets what it is called.” Wonderful sentences, immediately persuasive. And yet this fair is a bed of a kind, made for outsider art. I am wondering how easily it can possibly lie there—and what it wants from me.


“Notes From a Marine Biologist’s Daughter”

by Anne McCrary Sullivan

My mother loves the salty mud of estuaries,
has no need of charts to know what time
low tide will come. She lives
by an arithmetic of moon,
calculates emergences of mud, . . .


“How I Learned to Count”

by Martin Lammon

In the Ohio I know, the one no one jokes about, Ralph Keefer
farms five hundred acres and holds on to that land
the way I’ve seen him grip a wrench. His right wrist,
cracked twenty years ago, has locked in place, so stiff
his arm and shoulder jerk and twist, half his body
devoted to the one small chore, tightening nut and bolt.


“St. George, the Dragon, and the Virgin”

by Robert Bly

The spiny Dragon
Who lives in the rat-
Filled caves is losing.

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