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

The Lure

The batfish hides there At the bottom of desire. A fleshy, wormlike lure Dangles freely, luminescent As a French tickler or line From a love song personified. Without eyes or guts, the male Grows into the female, a Jonah Inside a scaled-down Moby Dick. She's bewitched among sea hair & kelp, filled with forbearance & a silent singing bitten in half, In a holy world of mouths Speaking watery reprieves In needful hush, down where His first breath was an open wound.

Already have an account? Login

Join KR for even more to read.

Register for a free account to read five free pieces a month from our current issue and digital archive.
Register for Free and Read This Piece



Or become a subscriber today and get complete, immediate access to our digital archives at every subscription level.
Yusef Komunyakaa’s seventeen books of poetry include Taboo, Dien Cai Dau, Neon Vernacular (for which he received the Pulitzer Prize), Warhorses, and most recently The Chameleon Couch and Testimony. His many honors include the William Faulkner Prize (Universite Rennes, France), the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, the Kingsley Tufts Award for Poetry, and the 2011 Wallace Stevens Award. His plays, performance art, and libretti have been performed internationally and include Saturnalia, Testimony, and Gilgamesh: A Verse Play. He teaches at New York University.

Read More

A Prayer

By Yusef Komunyakaa

The batfish hides there At the bottom of desire. A fleshy, wormlike lure Dangles freely, luminescent As a French tickler or line From a love song personified. Without eyes or […]

K’rar

By Yusef Komunyakaa

The batfish hides there At the bottom of desire. A fleshy, wormlike lure Dangles freely, luminescent As a French tickler or line From a love song personified. Without eyes or […]

Subscribe

Your free registration with Kenyon review incudes access to exclusive content, early access to program registration, and more.

Donate

With your support, we’ll continue 
to cultivate talent and publish extraordinary literature from diverse voices around the world.