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Poems and Links

To Dotted Lines

 

that instruct

where to

fold

paper hearts,

cut tabs

on Betsy McCall’s

skirt and ice skates,

walk

from Patient Intake to

Emergency Room A.

 

Short cut

for your pawn

rounding the

Huckleberry Hound

game board.

 

Dividing

lanes

and states.

Demarking

theoretical

landings for

bank robbers

in parachutes,

hundred-year floods,

nuclear fallout.

 

Asymptotes

at 0 and π.

Maximum volume,

minimum height,

finish line.

 

The detectible

connection

between a wife

and somebody else’s

man.

Warning you

in urgent Morse code—

dash, dash, dash.

Oh, oh, oh—

 

zones

vulnerable

to touch.

Before-

and after-

silhouettes

of love.

 

Trajectory

of a bullet

before

the trigger’s pulled.

Outline

of a body

where it lay.

 

Awaiting

your signature,

scissors,

dancing feet.

 

Denoting

whispers,

caught breath.

 

Ghost map

of your grave.

 

originally appeared in The Adroit Journal

 

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Poems Online

Poetics

Following are brief reviews of four poets’ collected letters. For anyone who can’t quite penetrate the eccentricity of Marianne Moore’s poetry, or who misses the deep feeling beneath Elizabeth Bishop’s famous control, I recommend their incomparable letters. Wallace Stevens explains “The Emperor of Ice Cream” and other mysteries, though the mystery of his inner life remains mostly intact. And the correspondence of WC Williams and Louis Zukofsky documents the modernist and avant-garde poetry movements and a warm and supportive friendship.

Other reviews in Umbrella Magazine