Summer 2007 • Vol. XXIX No. 3 Poetry |

The Imitation of Things Familiar

                England At dawn, the doves practice their imitations of owls or their American cousins, featureless as souls. How did they spot us, fresh off airport ramps, our passports steaming with new stamps? The girls from the sixth-form college look bedraggled and oppressed, as if they took from school no more than names and dates. Everything, for them, has happened too late— the dead are just their secret sharers. Like anything built of love, the past is whispers; or is it like water, indifferent and cruel, poured into a language strange as Istanbul? As we get older, we stare into all-too-deep abysses. The pools we love were once loved by Narcissus.

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Photo of William Logan
William Logan’s most recent book of poetry is Rift of Light (Penguin, 2017); his most recent book of criticism, Broken Ground: Poetry and the Demon of History (Columbia University Press, 2021). He teaches at the University of Florida.

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                England At dawn, the doves practice their imitations of owls or their American cousins, featureless as souls. How did they spot us, fresh off airport ramps, our passports steaming with […]

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                England At dawn, the doves practice their imitations of owls or their American cousins, featureless as souls. How did they spot us, fresh off airport ramps, our passports steaming with […]

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