Jan/Feb 2022 • Vol. XLIV No. 1 Poetry |


Beer Lotto Wine Cigs is a sign before a door- way I walk through to buy a bottle of water, is a hole I fall some stairs down into in order to buy a bottle of water for three dollars from a shop that features two old men sitting in their dirt by the register and who laugh at charging me a dollar for a banana; I’m sure they’ll have lots to joke about once I turn to walk back out, cross the street to climb back up to the room, in which I am thinking about Leda and the Swan and what I can’t get over is how the search results always direct me to the same object of focus: I am wondering how it would feel to travel down a swan’s throat as a water reed, and if the fluid neck’s vertebrae are not unlike a snake’s, and is there a coiling that a swan undertakes should it wish to be your companion, say, weaving its neck around your arm thrice before tucking its head to rest beneath your breast? The search terms for swan swallowing allow me to consider that the words reversed me

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Photo of Cate Marvin

Cate Marvin has published four books of poems, most recently Event Horizon (Copper Canyon Press, 2022). She teaches at the College of Staten Island, City University of New York, and lives in Southern Maine.

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