A Head in Bad Times
Provocative shorter essays on politics, the campus, identity, discourse, art, performance, and society. These essays join 42 reviews of major and minor films, in both the popular and art-film repertories, with a stress on formalism and how criticism can be distanced from personal or even political bias.
First Declension: New and Collected Poems
Two English Girls and the Continent
Am I That Far?
The bulk of this collection was created during the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic, and some poems are steeped in the mood. Most, though, pass through the eternal reflections of a life left in tow and in regret.
As usual, Bruno manages to find the laughter. This edition features a fresh and exciting translation of Arthur Rimbaud's classic Le Bateau ivre, which Bruno has also re-titled in good and faithful English.
Asterisk! & Spark Dot
Asterisk! is a 2-act satire on cultural revisionism and other fashions in today’s publishing. The play is set in the office of a line of magazines running on yesterday’s paradigms, but with a rebellious staff. Certain of the editors are eager to remake the style book. This sets up a dance for friends and influencers: Who will inherit the Word? Will it be the intriguing moon-boy named Habash? It’s all kooky fun; however, in the wings lurk deception and a fight for hidden desires.
Spark Dot (60 min, 2 parts) is set in a regional airport with few people in transit, since it’s Day One of the easing of pandemic lock-down. Gerhardt and his ex-roommate are facing a security check, but it’s not going well. His friend has flown in to support him, but neither man knows what he wants in the fly-out. This highly poetic script ends in a startling reversal.
Rooms to Let
“Make me immortal with a kiss,” begs Dr. Faustus the experimenter, in Marlowe’s timeless classic. Still, a few acts earlier, he has muttered the caveat: “All places shall be hell that are not Heaven.” In Walter Bruno’s new play, similar risks are juggled.
Bray, a middle-aged actor & talent agent, is busy arranging the lives of dependents. Unfortunately, one man’s arrangement is another’s disruption, especially when it involves offspring of a rebellious era. Relations that Bray had enjoyed two decades earlier threaten to rebound. This highly poetic work holds the stage for two suspenseful acts. The second half of the book presents After Guillaume, the novella (revised) that inspired this play.