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CategoryPoetry

 

The apple tree

in my childhood yard was felled. The fruit would rot, attracting wasps and yellow jackets. Open mouths tore at the pulp. I stepped in the mushy mounds. I don’t notice the hollowed tunnels in my own apple heart that you burrowed through. Your entry and your exit. I have forgotten …

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YMCA

The man who sells us pizza moonlights here, lambasting women on stationary bikes up imaginary hills. His class, my friend says, always fills. There is something touching about this: a man’s unwanted flair for browbeating transformed into an asset at last. I know some misery finds the Y, too. A …

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September

and what is this quality of duration, this resolution, or the way resolve turns itself over stone fruit, strong coffee, sorting sense from sense turning the oven on and off, running the laundry, opening and closing windows tending the garden (winged things) a repetition of something basically present or maybe …

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Dear John Ashbery

You seem to understand the need to think things through all the while never getting up from the breakfast table. A plate of parmigiano-reggiano drizzled with honey—delish. The make-it-new-again poets wound up in the newspaper on the same page as murderers. My morning routine has flowering clovers and juggernauts in …

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How it Burned

In the photo of Notre Dame, three ravens swim in the churn of smoke and flame.  In stories, ravens live close to the end of the world.   They are hungry, and the cathedral is consumed already. They are ready. They like it this way. On that façade stands the carving …

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This Country Keeps Unearthing Grief from Me

& I swear, I tried to swallow it.   Like a chasm, I pushed the memories of each carnage down   my throat.   But she keeps pulling them out— a stubborn unburial.   All the names of the dead   screeching as they slide off my teeth.   & Lord, the abundance of …

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O Madonna

not that Madonna THE Madonna, the one with the white lacy bra ten too many fake-jewel bling-blings o honey baby lord and ladies help me when I leave home my hand sani and every bathroom from here to Chehalis is closed oh woe gah hear me as I grieve for …

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On the Garden Pond, in Boston

In Boston, two looping swans together on the Garden pond crawling with bush rats. The pond lazy with birds and Emerson students smoking weed by the pond and Tufts students hustling weed by the pond and lovers holding hands and taking selfies by the pond. Does anyone notice the swans …

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