Your father is lying on the couch under a quilt with an Apsáalooke print on it. He tells you, I’m sorry I can’t go, this thing is killing me. And you nod your head that folds your high-necked sweater down because it is old and has been worn and washed time and again. You are hot, standing there in your sweater and your jacket and your bright vest with your wool hat and two layers of pants. He tells you, You’ll be fine but stay off the reservation. He tells you he’s expecting big things from you—that you will feed the family over the winter after today.
When I came home from summer camp in the Poconos in 1958, Knutt showed me a pair of turtles he’d caught in Queen Anne Creek. Silver-dollar-size painted terrapins basked on sunlit mats of watercress that grew against Queen Anne’s banks like barrier reefs beside the deeper, more quickly flowing clear-water channel midstream.
Poetry had the feeling that they’d always been holding hands, that they sometimes forgot. Prose had the feeling that when they forgot they forgot on purpose. These feelings they had, they had them, then they had some others.
He stood outside the fitness center and watched the women work out in gym suits and leotards that reminded him of sitcoms from the Seventies. There were many fitness centers in the city where he sometimes worked, but this was the one he stopped at. He watched the men,...
Julie Choffel’s The Hello Delay reads very much like “a cautionary tale” for our current age, one that both warns against and seeks out the anxiety that comes with living in the year 2012.
G.C. Waldrep’s most recent collection, Your Father on the Train of Ghosts (BOA Editions, 2011), was a collaborative project with the poet John Gallaher.
The Winter 2012 issue is here, with a special feature on Eileen Myles, the Neil Shepard Prize winners, and a whole mess of new poetry, fiction, and nonfiction.
Jeffrey Harrison is the author of Incomplete Knowledge (2006), a runner-up for the Poets’ Prize; Feeding the Fire (2001); and The Singing Underneath (1988), chosen by James Merrill for the National Poetry Series.
I walk a lot. This city is the city I will remember as the one I was living in when I first began to notice the physical effects of aging. And yet I am more or less fit.
Slavery in the South seems like an exhausted subject, but Laird Hunt’s Kind One feels fresh.