American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Collection · Contemporary · Excerpt · Passage · Poetry

Richard Siken

Hello darling, sorry about that.
                                                     Sorry about the bony elbows, sorry we
lived here, sorry about the scene at the bottom of the stairwell
                                  and how I ruined everything by saying it out loud.
           Especially that, but I should have known.
You see, I take the parts that I remember and stitch them back together
           to make a creature that will do what I say
or love me back.

— Richard Siken, from “Litany in Which Certain Things Are Crossed Out,” Crush (Yale University Press. 2009)

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