Poetry

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No. 216 Spring 2016

J. D. McClatchy, Two Poems

Even on this first leg of the forced march
Into winter, the rows of ragged troops
In the field can barely stand

Frederick Seidel, Paris

I wear a suicide belt I detonate
And make my City of Light 
A coprophagic tomb. 

Amit Majmudar, Nostalgia

Once upon a time. Twice on her parents’ bed.
She freaked out when she found the human stain

James Tate, Untitled

I sat at my desk and contemplated all that I had accomplished
this year. I had won the hot dog eating contest on Rhode Island.

John Ashbery, Four Poems

Customize the event, picking at soul scabs,
turning your face optimistically toward the window.

Erica Ehrenberg, Pause at the Edge of the Country

I can already taste the cheese dip in my mouth, but also the skin of his penis.

Morgan Parker, Hottentot Venus Full Text

I wish my pussy could live 
in a different shape and get
some goddamn respect.

Mary Ruefle, Two Poems

I am never lonely and never bored. Except when I bore myself, which is my definition of loneliness—to bore oneself.

Cynthia Zarin, Japanese Poems

Japanese Poems:

Between the bent boughs  
of the splayed sumac, the silver
owl rests his head

Mary Jo Bang, Four Poems

Does the erotic exist outside architecture? The shepherd 
asleep, the shepherd awake—his staff in his hand.

No. 215 Winter 2015

Jana Prikryl, The Moth

He’d like to be at one with his new self
but memories sit in him like eyes.

Sharon Olds, Two Poems

Herons, egrets, ibises, bitterns,
storks, cranes, coots, rails

Henri Cole, Five Poems

On this tenth day of the year, I play Stravinsky
and sip vodka from a paper cup, taking in the view.

Jeff Dolven, From “A New English Grammar”

The haystack’s painting hangs in the Met;
the painting of the haystack, that is,
the one by Monet, not by van Gogh,

Mark Ford, Trial and Error

Tired of the eighties, and the on-
going crisis in masculinity—the compliment 

Samuel Beckett, Doggerels

vive morte ma seule saison
lis blancs chrysanthèmes

Kenneth Irby, Pastorale II

The fog lies thick over the bay,
                                               above Mt. Tamalpais

Anne Carson, Salon

what shape should I file my nails I wonder

follow shape of moon usually best

No. 214 Fall 2015

Linda Pastan, The Collected Poems

They take you through my life
one poem at a time,
memory’s beast raging
through the pages

Nathaniel Mackey, Song of the Andoumboulou: 145

The morning’s horn extended a palmful of 
   sand. I felt a dry sprig on my face, frozen

Geoffrey G. O’Brien, Sonnets So Far

The past of having makes the present
Bleed and then we’re asked to
Forget it like imagined slights

Kevin Prufer, Two Poems

Only his old dog recognized him when, 
after twenty years,

Stephen Dunn, Three Poems

The dolphin was all undulation,
riding its whims and churning 

Michael Hofmann, Four Poems

You have a raspberry silk suit.
May I fuck you in it?

Eileen Myles, Circus

Jill tells me about the
show she is making

Ange Mlinko, Two Poems

As the undisputed delivery system 
for this pathogen, 

No. 213 Summer 2015

John Koethe, The Swimmer

Photo: sitting by the cabin on Lake Au Train
We rented every summer, reading John Cheever,

Ishion Hutchinson, The Difference

They talk oil in heavy jackets and plaid over 
their coffee, they talk Texas and the north cold,

Nick Twemlow, Attributed to the Harrow Painter

When I was twelve, 
My tennis coach asked me 
To pose for him after practice.

Peter Cole, The Unsure Moralist Full Text

I’m tired of life and its troubles.
Whoever lives as long as I have or will
grows weary: it’s inevitable.

Iman Mersal, The Curse of Small Creatures

The women examined you with furrowed brows, looking as though they had been toasted by years of sun.

 

Radmila Lazić, Two Poems

I sharpened knives
All night.

Xi Chuan, Two Poems

an ant dies, and no one mourns
a bird dies, and no one mourns if it isn’t a crested ibis

D. Nurkse, Three Poems

I am a child acting Romeo.
I love Juliet desperately
but I cannot say it.

Coral Bracho, The Signal of His Urge

If the Emperor smiles
a thread falls that cuts

No. 212 Spring 2015

Stephen Dunn, The Owner of the Boutique at Redwood Falls

There came a time when she found pleasure
in saying the word pussy, alert to see whom it shocked

Susan Stewart, Two Poems Full Text

The season of the cut and clear. The bales squared
in the distance, a hollow house, no windows or doors.

Craig Morgan Teicher, Book Review: ‘The Mountain Lion’ by Jean Stafford

Spoiler alert: Jean Stafford, in her
all-but-out-of-print masterwork

Major Jackson, Italy

for Derek Walcott

Shuzo Takiguchi, The Fish’s Desire

Virginal decorations.
The pain of countless upside-down candles.

Sarah Trudgeon, In the Red

Dementia’s wheeled to the window
for the fireworks, like boneless 

Peter Gizzi, Three Poems

Here there are small animals
foraging and content

Charles Simic, Three Poems

Children’s fingerprints
On a frozen window

No. 211 Winter 2014

Jana Prikryl, Thirty Thousand Islands

My mind went on composing its account at night,
I could hear it tracing glyphs on the hard substance

Cathy Park Hong, Three Poems

I want to write like a man, probing
my glitchy mind like it’s the rarest orchid.

Jeff Dolven, Discretion is the Very Soul of Your Pants Pocket

Discretion is the very soul of your pants pocket:
first, because your pocket hides whatever you put in it,

Brenda Shaughnessy, In This Economy

Phillis Levin, Three Poems

There is another room
You could spend time in.

Sylvie Baumgartel, Two Poems

The Ponte Vecchio was built
For butcher shops.

Frederick Seidel, Six Poems

On the other side of the street, the buildings sit on smoke,
About to lift off—it’s spring!

No. 210 Fall 2014

Brenda Shaughnessy, Life’s Work

The round white knob
on the dresser drawer—

Linda Pastan, Consider the Space Between Stars

Consider the white space
between words on a page, not just

Frederick Seidel, Aeneidos Liber Quartus

I don’t read.
I read Rilke and bleed.

Ben Lerner, Contre-Jour

          The light that changes
the light that goes out

Devin Johnston, Two Poems

Not days of anger
but days of irritation,

Maureen N. McLane, Three Poems

You are in bed
and Antigone’s dead

Stephen Dunn, The Melancholy of the Nude

She was thinking it was time
to be naked again, to take something off

Karen Solie, Four Poems

Reclaimed from brushwood,
from coarse rank grass interspersed

No. 209 Summer 2014

Les Murray, A Denizen

The octopus is dead
who lived in Wylies Baths

Jane Hirshfield, A Cottony Fate

Long ago, someone
told me: avoid or.

Henri Cole, Three Poems

Eating a sugar sandwich, I sit at the kitchen table
admiring the geraniums outside the window,

Thomas Sayers Ellis, Polo Goes to the Moon

  There’s been
 a lot of talk,

Adam Kirsch, My Wife in Joy and Sorrow, 1911

Bewildered now to be so unalike,
Who were for one another from the start

Rowan Ricardo Phillips, Two Poems

Not knowing the difference between Heaven
And Paradise, he called them both Heaven.

Ange Mlinko, Two Poems

Birds don’t care that the land is ugly,
decorated with handsome cattle

Nick Laird, Watermelon Seed

If you extract the compact planet,
roughly sketched with jungle, wetlands,

Charles Simic, Four Poems

You’ve been paying visits
To that hunchbacked tailor

No. 208 Spring 2014

Nick Laird, XY

When he slide it in the slot and press
the buttons in their order, wait,

Carol Muske-Dukes, No Hands

No. 207 Winter 2013

Monica Youn, Two Poems

To spectate
is a verb

Charlie Smith, Bus to Tuxtla

Sometimes you wait a while for the bus—
the bus of happiness

Sylvie Baumgartel, Two Poems

The windows around Gramercy have eyes.
We look, they look back.

Emily Moore, Ghazal

She was older, sleek, and had a bite to her,
but I was bolder with my knees on either side of her.

Linda Pastan, Last Rites

She’s given up sex.
She’s given up travel.

Hilda Hilst, From “Alcohologues”

The coat of Italian red eyes me. Wool
Unraveling from abuse,

Susan Stewart, Pine Full Text

a homely word:
a plosive, a long cry, a quiet stop, a silent letter

Kevin Prufer, How He Loved Them Full Text

How much the colonel loved his granddaughters
you will never know.

No. 206 Fall 2013

Dan Chiasson, Bicentennial

Moving as a mind moves across a math problem,
Or an eye across a lover’s body,

Craig Morgan Teicher, Why Poetry: A Partial Autobiography

As if in answer to a primordial urge,
I longed for something

Maureen N. McLane, As I Was Saying, the Sun

& the moon and all stars
you can name
are fantastic!

Durs Grünbein, Peacocks on Broadway

Everything’s a couple sizes bigger: a sky
Cutting deep into the streets, hydrants

 

Jana Prikryl, “A Place as Good as Any”

Outside the funeral of the politician who died young
I waited for you. Rolled in my hand like a baton

Charles Simic, Four Poems

It pains me to see an old woman fret over
A few small coins outside a grocery store—

Luigia Sorrentino, Two Poems

we had climbed up the mountain
towards the colossal figure of the temple

Rowan Ricardo Phillips, The Mind After Everything Has Happened

Perpetual peace. Perpetual light.
From a distance it all seems graffiti.

Frederick Seidel, Two Poems

You’re born that way—or else you’re not.
It’s snowing—or else it’s hot.

No. 205 Summer 2013

Henk Rossouw, The Dream of the Road

Charles Harper Webb, Respect

Rachel Hadas, The Veil and the Baby

Donna Stonecipher, From “Model City”

Karl Kirchwey, A Hundred Years from Now

Gretchen Marquette, Ode to a Man in Dress Clothes

Geoffrey Brock, Dental Hygiene Through the Ages

D. Nurkse, Secret of the Lit Window

No. 204 Spring 2013

Melcion Mateu, Abyss

Ange Mlinko, Wingandecoia

Tony Hoagland, White Writer

John Freeman, Beirut

Stephen Dunn, Feathers

Peter Cole, From “The Invention of Influence”

Frederick Seidel, Pussy Days

No. 203 Winter 2012

Steven Cramer, Lackawanna

Yasiin Bey, One Called Trill

Geoffrey Hill, Three Poems

Regan Good, The Wasps’ House

Mortared by macerated wood-pulp effluvium,
                                 a paper palace hangs.

Linda Pastan, Ah, Friend

Ben Lerner, No Art

Devin Johnston, Means of Escape

No. 202 Fall 2012

August Kleinzahler, The Rapture of Vachel Lindsay

Jason Zuzga, Liquid Courage

George Seferis, Helen

No. 201 Summer 2012

Raúl Zurita, The Pacific Is the Sky

      So torrents of the Seventh,
    Fifth and Ninth. Riverbeds of
   Bach, Beethoven and Amadeus
rapids of the sky, peaks and pastures

David Ferry, That Now Are Wild and Do Not Remember

Where did you go to, when you went away?

It is as if you step by step were going
Someplace elsewhere into some other range
Of speaking, that I had no gift for speaking,
Knowing nothing of the language of that place

Lucie Brock-Broido, Posthumous Seduction

The orchard grew excellent,

Good mass of apples assembling, one angel burned, looped
On the wire fence, in a bowl of gold most satisfactory.

Octavio Paz, Target Practice

The tide covers, discovers, recovers, and always walks in the nude.
The tide weaves and unweaves, embraces and separates, is never the same and
      never another.

John Ashbery, Three Poems

Sophie Cabot Black, Online Again

No. 200 Spring 2012

Nicanor Parra, Defense of Violeta Parra

Sweet neighbor of the green forest
Eternal guest of April in bloom

Susan Barbour, Insomnia

I have been courting sleep
and catering to its taste in nightgowns.

Stephen Dunn, Sea Level

Down from the mountains of Appalachia
and the highs of new love

Yusef Komunyakaa, Two Poems

You huddle into a shield or breastplate,
a whisper in the dark summoning your kin

Adrienne Rich, Itinerary Full Text

Burnt by lightning nevertheless
she’ll walk this terra infinita

Rowan Ricardo Phillips, Heralds of Delicioso Coco Helado

The moods of the cantaloupe king are moods
Of the melon king in green variations.

Maureen N. McLane, Two Poems

a “beautiful day”
nothing happened

Frederick Seidel, Five Poems

The city sleeps with the lights on.
The insomniac wants it to be morning.

No. 199 Winter 2011

Gottfried Benn, Five Poems

The solitary molar of a streetwalker 
whose body had gone unclaimed 

Ange Mlinko, Two Poems

On leftovers ana breakfast   like the spleenish wulf the wéstenas chase. 
He sets out hungry,   nose in the wind, up the wulfhleoþu

Jonathan Galassi, Six Poems

I tried, and each attempt was a fiasco. 
I yearned, but every love of mine was wrong. 

David Wagoner, Two Poems

It means stand still. It means
stay just as sweet as you are

No. 198 Fall 2011

Meghan O’Rourke, Two Poems

Our ménage à trois by candlelight—;
the various absurdities: black lace,

Forrest Gander, Body Visible

Then he deflowers her, pulling away the greenery.
Then a blue vein thinning into a hollow.

Jeff Dolven, Two Poems

Catch! It’s a quarter, right? You got it? Good.
Now, pinch the flat between your first two fingers,

Paul Muldoon, Required Fields

Then we could ride all day and yet
not reach the farthest edge of our demesne,

Constantine P. Cavafy, In Despair

He’s gone from him forever,     and ever since he’s sought
his lips on the lips of every     boy he goes to bed with,

Brenda Shaughnessy, Two Poems

Feelings seem like made-up things,
though I know they’re not.

Sharon Olds, The Haircut

A year after he left I thought of the day he’d been
sick and I’d cut my then-husband’s hair

No. 197 Summer 2011

Frederick Seidel, Arabia Full Text

I move my body meat smell next to yours,
Your spice of Zanzibar. Mine rains, yours pours—

Lia Purpura, Two Poems

At your center:
spectacles to sharpen sight,

Kevin Prufer, Two Poems

In 1981
          in a hotel gift shop outside Phoenix, AZ,

No. 196 Spring 2011

Various Authors, Five Poems of Kabbalah

Bring me in under your wing, 
    be sister for me, and mother, 

Linda Gregerson, Slaters’ Measure

Beneath which the quarryman 
    crawls. Or rather 

Stephen Dunn, Leaving the Empty Room Full Text

The door had a double lock,
and the joke was on me.

Chris Andrews, Two Poems

Sounds that came into the world in my lifetime 
already sound old-fangled: dial-up modems, 

Clare Rossini, The Nitro Full Text

I wanted sky. That was my ambition. And now I’m being tugged 
Up a small steel mountain,

No. 195 Winter 2010

Albert Goldbarth, Minnows, Darters, Sturgeon

Jim Moore, Blood in Our Headlights, Car Wrecked, the Boar Dead

Brian Blanchfield, Smalltown Lift Full Text

One last stop, he says. And they drive to Westside Lanes.
I grew up bowling. I don’t want to bowl. It was raining.

Damion Searls, 808 A.D. Full Text

Not too old, not young anymore,
almost three dozen years gone by.

Maureen N. McLane, Three Poems

That man over there
looking sidelong

Devin Johnston, Two Poems

I made this up from nothing.
It’s not myself I sing,

No. 194 Fall 2010

Daniel Bosch, Solutions to Autumn

September, with a paintbrush, on Monadnock.
October, in the backyard, with a silencer.

Dorothea Lasky, It's a Lonely World

John Tranter, Four Poems After Baudelaire

In the good old days mutations appeared everywhere,
and every second baby was a monster. 

Giacomo Leopardi, Two Poems

Young girl's song, insistent song
wafting from a hidden room and wandering

Frederick Seidel, Five Poems

The second woman shines my shoes.
The other takes my order, curtsies. Thank you, sir.

Carol Muske-Dukes, Condolence Note: Los Angeles

No. 193 Summer 2010

Deborah Pease, Self-Portrait in Iceland Full Text

The face is featureless,
As though bound in tight gauze,

Deborah Pease, Sheep in Landscape

(After a painting by Louisa Matthíasdóttir)

Peg Boyers, At the Guggenheim Museum, Venice

I am straddling Marini’s horse
using the horseman’s cock as my handle

James Longenbach, Knowledge

Of the vastness of clouds
We knew nothing;

Ron De Maris, Old Cadillac

Julia Story, Four Poems

Jorie Graham, Three Poems

Matthew Zapruder, Come On All You Ghosts

I heard a little cough 
in the room, and turned 

No. 192 Spring 2010

Chloe Honum, Fever

J. Allyn Rosser, Sore Ga, Doshita

Deborah Landau, Dear Someone Full Text

my emptiness has a lake in it   deep and watery 
with several temperaments      milk  cola  beer 

Sarah Cohen, The Invisible Hand

Linda Pastan, Eve on Her Deathbed Full Text

In the end we are no more than our own stories: 
mine a few brief passages in the Book, 

Alexander Nemser, The Encyclopedia of the Dead

Charles Simic, Six Poems

That was the year the Nazis marched into Vienna, 
Superman made his debut in Action Comics,