Psaltery & Lyre

Thou Shalt Not

I want to die to see what it's like, then / come back again and tell folks what I saw

Another Bleeding Title

rends itself across the page. You say obviously / as if it’s clear, but I have no idea / / what you mean.

Book Review: Flying Yellow, by Suzanne Underwood Rhodes

Like the best marriages, the term pietas metrica, employed by the poet-priest Gerard Manley Hopkins, joins the highest expressions of nature and religion. Suzanne Underwood Rhodes’ Flying Yellow: New and Selected Poems further deepens and humanizes this notion, moving from the “pitch-black storms” of girlhood to a “ladder of arms” raising her to an ecstatic Sufi-like whir capturing in word and heart the fruited world around and within her.

Pro Patria

Someone says "my country" / and I see a riverbed and many brooks. / I hear brakes and bells, see a pigeon / shot from the sky, small cloud falling.

Forgetfulness and the Day of Judgment

So the River Lethe was where the Greeks went / in Hades to forget their former lives.

Journal Entry: Apocalypse

Hot air moves to find some comfort, a breeze / that could cause a blaze.

Two Poems

The Esnoga— see time’s horses / slipping down / YOUR holy walls / / her 400 year-old bricks / and glass / Sabbath’s opaque light

The Clown

You stand next to a clown, a real clown, with the painted white face and spongy red wig. He has pulled you to the front of the room, where he speaks rapid Spanish that you cannot understand. Everyone else in the room—including the Peruvian family you’ve been teaching—understands what he is saying, and laughs. All you’ve picked out is the word “Mormon.” What you understand: You are the butt of the joke. No, you are the joke.

onion skin

I would give up God for this poem. No more prayers, no more hymns, no more white lilies on my granny’s grave.

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