Summer/Fall 1997 • Vol. XIX No. 3/4 Poetry |

Sad Song

There are women carrying torches coming toward us. Their eyes are accidents. The kind that happen on the highway in the middle of the night. The kind we glimpse as we drive by. A flare in snow, a metal cage with ruined tigers in it. We look away, and then we're home. There are hundreds of women marching forward, carrying torches like a burning orchard. They're coming for us, and everything's on fire. Even the torpedo boats. Even the starfish creeping along the ocean floor in families, in the utterly deaf and dumb. Here they come: You open your mouth and I see the word bye float out, like a jeweled wasp with a golden Y around her neck. Those wasps have made an elaborate nest in the attic, in my trunk of party dresses: All that buzzing about you, all that frantic dancing like a barbed breeze in my hair. I lift the lid of that trunk for the first time in years. Stale carnations and yellow lace. All the invitations I didn't take turned to female

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Laura Kasischke has published eight collections of poetry. She received the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry in 2011 for Space, in Chains (Copper Canyon). She teaches at the University of Michigan.

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The Whole

By Laura Kasischke

There are women carrying torches coming toward us. Their eyes are accidents. The kind that happen on the highway in the middle of the night. The kind we glimpse as […]

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