Pantoum The first time I touch a man in lust I remember this: pleasure isn’t something you should give away so easily. Everything I know about loving a man comes second hand; my mother shares with my sister in the next room, I listen. Pleasure isn’t something you should give away so easily, I collect… Continue reading Juan Luis Guzmán
When this day returns to me I will value your heart, long hurt in long division, over mine. Mouth above mine too — say you love me, truth never more meant, say you are angry. Words, words we net with our mouths. Soul is an old thirst but not as first as the body’s perhaps, though… Continue reading Lisa Russ Spaar
I will never forget you. Your nakedness haunts me in the dawn when I can not distinguish your flushed brown skin from the burning horizon, or my hands. The smell of chaos lingers in the clothes you left behind. I hold you there. — Joy Harjo, from “Songs from the House of Death, or How… Continue reading Joy Harjo
How thrilling to appear in his eyes. She can’t understand what he’s saying: she’s too busy chewing his voice. She looks at the mouth she’ll never kiss, at the shoulder she’ll never cry on, at the hand she’ll never hold, and at the ground where their shadows meet. — Dunya Mikhail, from “Tablets,” trans. from… Continue reading Dunya Mikhail
You’ll be driving along depressed when suddenly a cloud will move and the sun will muscle through and ignite the hills. It may not last. Probably won’t last. But for a moment the whole world comes to. Wakes up. Proves it lives. It lives— red, yellow, orange, brown, russet, ocher, vermillion, gold. Flame and rust.… Continue reading Lloyd Schwartz
In the beginning was the fragment, and the fragment cast a shadow, and the shadow became the word. — Carlos V. Reye, from “Histories,” in “Fragments on Fragments 1,” FragLit (no. 1, Fall 2007)
Soar, eat ether, see what has never been seen; depart, be lost, But climb. — Edna St. Vincent Millay, from “One Thought in Harness,” Saturday Evening Post;2/24/1934, Vol. 206 Issue 35, p23.