Summer 1998 • Vol. XX No. 3/4 Poetry |

February Sky

“endlessly making an end to things”      —Celan I must have left a fingerprint, a molecule of oil,             a seal, a slick when I took my hands awayfrom her throat—the way she liked in loving             to have her pearls exchanged for the torqueof my fingers and so kill her eminence for a second.             The queen is dead. Long live the queen. The evidencewas volatile, was fugitive, was a story told             in menstrual blood and glycerines, Chanel and bosssauce. It failed in the telling to be events             and sequence, the spell of water and bridge, and becamerain and distance, the first faint smell of

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Bruce Smith is the author of six books of poems, most recently Devotions, a finalist for the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Awards, the L.A. Times Book Award, and the winner of the William Carlos Williams Prize.

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