Winter 2004 • Vol. XXVI No. 1 Poetry |

Suttee

Cars oiling slowly through the rich grid of the Basin. White, red, the chaining hemoglobes, from the ridge    you watched them, their shhh and wahhh    wafting up through the canyon, the medicine-smelling trees— Eucalyptus. Pink stars of ice plant, night-drained of color. Open your mouth, he said. ⁂ Do you want Batman or Spiderman. Do you want the wizard hat or Professor X, the green skull    with a rose in its teeth, do you want the thunderbolt or the smiley face. George Washington with spirals for eyes. ⁂ You were a feelingless light— without parents or hunger— sliding your back along the length of the car,    then slipping to the glass-smacked ground— and found the moon analgesic— pocked and chemical for your    amputated tongue, you opened your mouth and he steadied your head,    and slipped another president in— and glided you    to the cement-lined river, furious

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Dana Levin
Dana Levin is the author of four books of poetry, most recently Banana Palace (Copper Canyon Press, 2016), which was a finalist for the Rilke Prize. She serves as Distinguished Writer in Residence at Maryville University in Saint Louis.

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