Spring 2009 • Vol. XXXI No. 2 Poetry |

One World at a Time

I wanted to starch my own headdress. I wanted my fingers to smell always of laundry. I wanted the sounds of my shoes to echo down the long corridors. I wanted to approach the dying soldier, freshly bandaged in his iron bed, and lay my hands on his head. Somewhere unseen a musician practicing for the evening's recital. Those sounds filling in for words, filling up our unspoken love. But in the end I didn't care who died. I wasn't even willing to mop up the blood. I hated childhood. Who put my thoughts in alphabetical order? They were forced to circle at night, just to make ends meet. And my pith helmet filled with sand—the encryptions crested and slumped, always advancing. And the nearest distant shore of the sky! Even the stars were a waste. I loved my camel though, and leaning forward hugged him on. 

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Mary Ruefle is the author of the forthcoming book Trances of the Blast (Wave Books, 2013), Madness, Rack, and Honey: Collected Lectures (Wave Books, 2012), a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in criticism, and Selected Poems (Wave Books, 2010), winner of the William Carlos Williams Award from the Poetry Society of America. She has published ten books of poetry, a book of prose (The Most of It, Wave Books, 2008), and a comic book, Go Home and Go to Bed!, (Pilot Books/Orange Table Comics, 2007).

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Resin

By Mary Ruefle

I wanted to starch my own headdress. I wanted my fingers to smell always of laundry. I wanted the sounds of my shoes to echo down the long corridors. I […]

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