Have you no one else to talk to? Your life is really that empty?
Her sentiments maudlin, malaise dripped like a fever from her pores.
The trees were a sign from the devil, a warning of the terror to come.
I never felt heart stop or skin burn, just the first split second of sound.
Even then (Colin remembers now), it felt like the end of something.
We are nothing; less than nothing, we are only what might have been.
No fountains to quench the thirst between rounds of tag.
My job requires me to make things disappear like a Vegas magician.
I reacted like a thief caught red-handed, and snapped the screen shut.
Vrindavan. Lord, what a place. Joyful, unbelievably filthy, and divine.
I never wavered, even when it was clear he was the dangerous one.
I think of each story as a big circle that’s all around me and I’m in the center.
No author dodged readers who were indifferent to masterpieces.
There was no way of knowing how many would answer the call to march.
Your hand on my nightgown, my soft places. I wish you wouldn’t do that.
The air has grown inside me. It’s become a sanctuary.
They’re shrieking down Little Round Top, receiving the good girls’ glares.
Praise the ease of it: how simple it is to tell the dog he loves her.
I make a point of smelling the lilac every day that first week in May.
My lust works like the tides pulling in reverse, controlled by a simple ballast.
So long as there was money, the girl felt established, and brutally proud.
Jenifer Browne Lawrence
I felt a blush rise to my skin, the sense of being trapped, helpless, exposed.
Literature lost its voice. Except on the page, it was silenced.
Judging beauty, which is keenest, Eye or heart or mind or penis?
This is the day when the saints all go silently to church in France.
It was as if my dead husband was flowing within me now, like blood.
My grandfather committed my grandmother to a mental asylum.
A goddam mean big sonofabitch boar rooted me in the stomach.
Gotta watch them damn sorry folks he sez they leave the best stuff.
She countered the reverence of his efforts stroke by stroke, tit for tat.
Getting over being drunk makes you wonder why the hell you did that.
That piece of flesh you’re with is a high school student, a minor.
Your words will strike her heart like Saint Teresa’s flaming arrow.
The goose cannot see the North but knows exactly where it lies.
Their hands were acting as airfoils, producing lift, not drag.
It seemed impossible for two people to fuck that long.
Joshua was well versed in things to which I was not yet privy, like sex.
The Great Gatsby had an awful, detrimental effect on me.
If a friend’s family is persecuted, call Sinn Fein on that number.
The dean’s voice was stuck in my head. Plagiarism. Expulsion.
It almost makes you cry, to know that you are no longer needed.
It was as if we were shedding our very selves to become someone else.
The golden-haired ones, they think they’re better than Virgin Mary.
I hadn’t always liked being around my mother while she was alive.
Her biggest secret was Jay Currie — her white American boyfriend.
Here, Min Jin reads from her novel at Narrative Night, New York City.
You don’t know what it’s like to be so hungry that you’d steal to eat.
I once heard in a sermon, “Choose the important over the urgent.”
In my eyes is the flame of the adolescent he wants to hire.
Sometimes a story is like a beehive. Sometimes an idea is like a poem.
Splayed toes adhesive on a whitewashed wall, ghost-tattoo.
He said, every night you close the store, I watch you walk to your car.
Let those shadows sift the spirits of their children from the silt.
The world is where we brace for a joke that’s about to be played on us.
She stopped, turned toward him, placed her hand on his chest.
He was gentle and slow, like a blind man washing dishes.
Let the squeamish suffer their fear, let them live without really living.
Last year alone, every American choked to death on a red balloon.
I felt nothing, which was cool, totally cool with me. For my blood was cola.
Are these poems just cumbersome or a critique of cumbersomeness?
Why am I always asleep in your poems? Look at me Ben, when am I.
She closed her mind to all familiar shapes and strained back.
When I think on it, I can’t believe I’m going to kill two people over weed.
Felicia knew why he was there. He was waiting. Waiting for her.
Motionless at the window. Forehead beaded with a line of fevered moons.
The raven cocked its black eye, dipped its beak in the red pool.
I cradled the lifeless bird in my hand and marveled at its beauty.
Her sly smile was a vicious remnant of her life before Real Life began.
I will tell you about the sick. They are ruthless, they are like Attila.
I will tell you about the sick. They are ruthless, they are like Attila.
She was here. She could not go on. It was the end—the end of the world.
Her nostrils flare with the intensity of effort; she’s like a little horse.
I have three girls from my previous marriages, but she beats them all.
She’d lifted the plot from a TV show she’d watched the night before.
Art is a way for the mind to master the body, even if it is not one’s own.
A poetry of texture and light runs through these photographs.
After moving, I began to look at the images and piece them together.
If life is an open vein, what’s brave about a sleeve-heart, sweetheart?
A heart takes precautions, withholds warmth, but it’s mistaken.
Passions played among the orchids and through cherish and reveal.
The surface of night is disrupted. Ripples cross the neighborhood.
Filarial worms in bloodstream darkness know when it’s night.
Her city, but no cats. Specks of color, no cloth.
I know that hairs
on my head go singly gray only
Abandon the idea that arts and sciences are mutually exclusive.
A goddess was offended; her altar required my virgin blood.
If he was going to pick me up, the least he could do was look at me.
Between me and the sky is a screen door and a whole mess of wind.
Her father is important in his village and has three wives.
Photo portraits, landscapes, and world scenes by Sandra Lloyd.
I’ve made a rigorous effort. But it’s been hard, this hug embargo.
“I—I am Martin Eden,” Martin began. (“And I want my five dollars.")
The holiest of all holidays are those kept by ourselves in silence.
At a red light he touches his cheek. The stubbly skin is sensitive, febrile.
My cry for the first time fastened garlands of hope to the roof.
If you are hidden treasure, mine, don’t let me lose what I have gained.
I pictured myself as a chart inside her head. Two sides: good and bad.
I was only five when Dad told me I had died. “You drowned,” he said.
It was the way of the world: everybody wanted someone else.
It was up airly and down late with him, and the loom never standin’ still.
I read an article and learn that the gloomy octopus has three hearts.
Your mother still glows with a smoothness that you envy.
“Why don’t you call yourself Butterfly?” he said. “A pretty thing like you.”
Heroic redemption relies on the revealing of one’s true hidden self.
I realize now that hers was the face that taught me what driving was.
If all along we all had known the leaves we leafed would leave us
I want to step out into sun to scintillate for waves to come and spray.
A man jostles my stride to the street, no shoulder on which to move.