Two poems, "Page" and "Lady Butter," are available online in the Adroit Journal's Issue Seventeen. Here's one in full:
Her hand a country
where women are fools
in harrowing bonnets,
only dreams can pursue them.
Winter bullied her, forced
a finger in her, made her
his wife, so that nobody
could touch her. When crowned,
she magnified her wand
into a mirror, caught what wind
& wired it shut. Her nature
ballooned in a cave of iniquity,
windows closed at her arrival
& true became truest
just by looking at her.
Her her a burr, the burr of her.
The waiting & bleeding
trembled her over, the monster
of her & her might—Origin
A man with no business wearing a hat
got lost in the woods, & took her:
Her names were Luxury, Glory,
Little Worm. She carved a carriage
& suffocated in sated sleep.
What a dull, what a little dull, what
a dull little being she was.
It is not up to us, who lives in the window.
Her mongrel’s puddled drool a portal
to nowhere. Afraid to move, afraid
of her body with its bells & chambers, echoing.
"She pet her sāwol on Sundays.
There is no wandering ache
in fairy tales. They have the look
of history: sealed as fruit, born
& beared, away. And words
can be so round, she thought,
givable, & in a basket. Carried
to a crone, not for comfort
but for Being. She was a lȳtel story,
on a pony bright & white as she,
alone, & uncaring of this, ultimately."
December reading at Malvern Books
I had a lot of fun summoning spirits and receiving strange love letters on behalf of the Harp Queen at the I Scream Social reading on Friday, December 4th. Ji Yoon Lee and Blake Lee Pate were amazing co-readers.
Malvern Books in Austin, TX, is one of the best bookstores in America. It was an honor to read there with Fani Papageorgiou and Kurt Heinzelman this Sunday, 9/13. I read new poems about a queen who has a harp for a head.
This year's First Book Prize at Cleveland State University's Poetry Center was judged by the incomparable Eileen Myles. Many congrats to the winner, Leora Fridman, and the other fine contenders with whom I'm grouped.