Winter 2001 • Vol. XXIII No. 1 Poetry |

Amy in the Afterworld

In memory of Amy Clampitt A blue flame coursed across the willow  where it wept into the river,   keeping low—  a jewel lost from its setting,   a ring sinking— and then I realized I'd seen a kingfisher. I knew it from the cover of your book.  You were five years gone,   the river Cam still  as always sluggish enough   for slime and lily. A single fisherman, out early, caught nothing. But the police had dragged it for something,  if only to give the frogmen   some exercise:  bicycles and a fax machine   roped in river weed lay where they'd been thrown to the bank. As if they'd been hauled from under the river,  having failed to deliver a message   to the underworld.  In death you wander green fields,   the Egyptians thought, longing for a better crop than they'd ever seen. Longing for Iowa, that state of being you left,  as soon as you could, for the city—   or was it the open water?  I wanted to tell

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DEBORA GREGER’s most recent book of poetry is Western Art, published by Penguin in fall 2004.

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Snake Bird

By Debora Greger

In memory of Amy Clampitt A blue flame coursed across the willow  where it wept into the river,   keeping low—  a jewel lost from its setting,   a ring sinking— and […]

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