ut that Carroll, a food historian whose delightful nonfiction book, Three Squares: The Invention of the American Meal (Basic Books, 2013) garnered strong reviews, was simply gearing up for her emergence as an extraordinary nature poet in the tradition of, among others, Wordsworth, Emerson, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, and Mary Oliver.read more
The minister is at the Days of Jesus before the girl arrives. He is in his office, waiting. His sermon is written and placed on the pulpit and he waits for the girl to arrive as he has all summer. She comes in the side door and takes the stairs to the basement practice room where she says she is working on her scales. The minister’s office has a large glass wall facing the basement. The girl looks up. The minister is standing at the bank of windows.read more
My first camping experience. We’re in Vermont over a Columbus Day weekend on the land of our absent friend Vinny. I’m keeping my husband company as the camera on its tripod records the imperceptible nighttime movement of the stars. Peace. Love. Tranquility. Until the mood is shattered by Ron’s passionate certainty that the two young strangers—unexpected intruders we’d encountered on this private land—are our murderers-in-waiting.read more
He had been fingering his sax mutely from behind the door. “No pretending you forgot something in the living room. No ‘Oh, I’m just coming out to get a glass of water.’” Lilly had gone through these provisions like a lawyer walking through a contract, even asking him to place hand over heart and swear. “But what’s all this?” he’d said, hurt. “Don’t you trust me?” “Not one bit,” she’d retorted. “I know you, Gaurav.”read more
I had never heard her utter the word “boob” before, let alone “boobies.” We were a missionary family, stopping to see relatives in Finland before moving permanently (terrifyingly) to the United States. I had known things would change when we left Kenya, but I hadn’t expected this. Boobies? Really, mom?read more
Oldguy, invited to a white-tie banquet / honoring him for service to mankind, / mistakes his rented duds for opera attire.read more
Silent, a few yards apart, we picked blackberries / in the wild place Dad didn’t know about. / He knew this much: Men could do us harm. / Some pervert might follow our broken twigsread more
I marry a column of air. / I marry my own / freedom, and at the altar / it and I merely brush / knuckles. I marry timeread more
Back then, you would have mistaken me for a happy person. Bright, cheerful. The kind of young woman you wanted your lost-in-his-dreams-of-moneyed-youth son to marry.
You would have thought that I was healthy. That I was pretty. That I was kind.read more
They poked me with a straw / sucked out some adipocytes, five bulbous bubbles.read more
I was a novice angler. / A junkie, nodding out, / Whispered, come a little / Closer—I’m going to / Let you in on a secret.read more
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