Among the many superb poems we published last year as Poems of the Week, five stood out for their deep humanity and intelligence. These poems, one by a Frenchman, one by a Belarussian, and three by Americans, provide a keyhole through which we can peer at a woman who has suffered in war; a father and child at their kitchen table; a woman buried in an Egyptian tomb; a lover who cannot bear to leave; a traveler extolling us to live.
The child writes, Child, and is amazed at this word.
Her city, but no cats. Specks of color, no cloth.
At dark a chariot arrives and no one sees you anymore.
To leave you is like refusing to wake.
2010 National Book Critics Circle Award Winner