Monday, May 31, 2021

Louise Glück / Midnight


by Louise Glück

Louise Glück / Medianoche

Speak to me, aching heart: what
Ridiculous errand are you inventing for yourself
Weeping in the dark garage
With your sack of garbage: it is not your job
To take out the garbage, it is your job
To empty the dishwasher. You are showing off
Exactly as you did in childhood—where
Is your sporting side, your famous
Ironic detachment? A little moonlight hits
The broken window, a little summer moonlight,
Murmurs from the earth with its ready
Is this the way you communicate
With your husband, not answering
When he calls, or is this the way the heart
Behaves when it grieves: it wants to be
Alone with the garbage? If I were you,
I’d think ahead. After fifteen years,
His voice could be getting tired; some night
If you don’t answer, someone else will answer.

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Protest Chant 2020 by Jennifer Michael Hecht


Protest Chant 2020

 Jennifer Michael Hecht

How was the blindfold supposed to help?
Was it one last moment alone with yourself?

Jennifer Michael Hecht is a poet and historian of science and culture. Her poetry books include Who Said (Copper Canyon), Funny (Wisconsin), and The Next Ancient World (Tupelo); and her poetry appears in The American Poetry ReviewThe New Yorker, and The Kenyon Review. Hecht holds a Ph.D. in history from Columbia University and her prose books include Stay: A History of Suicide (Yale) and Doubt: A History (HarperOne). She’s writing a book on poetry after religion for Farrar, Straus and Giroux.


Sunday, May 9, 2021

Geoffrey Brock / Mezzo cammin

Mezzo cammin

Today, as I jogged down the center line 
of a closed-off, rain-glossed road, lost in a rhythm, 
the memory of a boy returned: fifteen
or so, barefoot in faded cut-off jeans, 
sprinting past neighbors’ houses, tears drifting 
into his ears, heart yanking at its seams—
he hoped they’d rip and didn’t slow at all 
for more than a mile. After crossing Mission,
the boy collapsed beneath an oak, his whole
body one cramp. (But later the secret smile, 
imagining Guinness there—the clock-men stunned!) 
Twenty years gone, that race so vivid still,
yet I can’t for the life of me recall the gun:
who was it, or what, that made me start to run?

Monday, May 3, 2021

Practical Joke by Brian Barker


Practical Joke 

by Brian Barker

The crows worked all night disassembling, then reassembling, a man’s car. By dawn it perched on the roof of his house in perfect working condition. The man knew not to get angry. He walked whistling to the curb, climbed into an imaginary car, made some engine noises, and drove off to work. As he slept that night, the crows countered. A man was messier than a car, and they squabbled about what went where. The next morning, the neighbors thought it the damnedest thing. A car on a roof, radio blaring. A man propped behind the wheel, an arm ending in a foot dangling carefree from the window. An ass in place of a face, sporting sunglasses, staring into endless blue sky.