Summer 2008 • Vol. XXX No. 3 PoetryJuly 1, 2008 |

Blasons

I woke up in the middle of the night because there was a noise. I vaguely heard rustling, as if pages were being turned. In the half-darkness (light was filtering in from streetlamps affixed to the façade of the building across the street) I saw a book as massive as a cinder block on my desk. It was open to a page where, even from my pillow, I could see ciphers within illuminated scrolls. Ciphers within illuminated scrolls of paisley on the summer draperies drawn on a dormant window facing mine were, in the penumbra, visible. You could open the window, said a voice which might have been a child's, except I knew it was my sister's, distorting my own, a mirror facing a grimacing child. The streetlamp caught, irrelevant detail a scimitar of scar across her chest. A scimitar of scar across her chest identified the outbound voyager (if only for the annals of the scar) waiting for the southbound five-o'clock train. It was Pentecost and the trains ran late. A pyramid of canvas suitcases w

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Marilyn Hacker is the author of twelve books of poems, most recently Names (W.W. Norton 2010), and of ten collections of poetry translated from French. She received the PEN Award for Poetry in Translation in 2009 for Marie Etienne’s King of a Hundred Horsemen. She is a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and a former editor of The Kenyon Review.

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Her Ring

By Marilyn Hacker

I woke up in the middle of the night because there was a noise. I vaguely heard rustling, as if pages were being turned. In the half-darkness (light was filtering […]

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