Cultuur & Literatuur
The American Poetry Review

The American Poetry Review November - December 2015

The American Poetry Review reaches a worldwide audience six times a year with the finest contemporary poetry, columns, interviews, photos, translations, and reviews. Every issue includes new voices, established masters, and exciting new translations.

United States
World Poetry, Inc
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6 Edities

in deze editie

9 min.
six poems

I Had a Mane Once A glorious thicket. A generosity for all the cicadas to visit when the rains descended. I let the hornets make a mockery of me. I didn’t sweat it. I let them sting and sting. I was enormous and magnanimous I cut my leg and let the maggots build an Empire. What did I care? There’s enough meat in me to go around. Then I’d stretch so the grubs could find new avenues. And they’d shiver with gratitude. They’d pass out drunk along the edges of the wound. I was my own economy. You could see me coming from miles around. And yes, I could break your last best thing in half. And yes, I was every inch an animal. But most days I was merciful: I’d pretend I was sleeping. I’d take all my danger and lay it at the river’s edge. The Sun Got All Over…

6 min.
four poems

Joseph’s Work In the great scheme of things, my job— Overseeing the produce at Sunshine Market, Maintaining quality in the bins—can’t be listed Among the jobs of first importance, I realize, but it does require some talent, The same displayed on a larger scale By the Joseph my parents were thinking of In naming me, the favorite son of Jacob, Who ended up as the overseer Of all the Egyptian granaries. It’s true my work doesn’t use all my gifts, But neither did Joseph’s work use all of his. His gift for interpreting dreams, for instance, Though it won him his place, wasn’t required Any time afterwards. If he used it then, He used it at home, on weekends, the place and time I use for playing my trumpet or teaching friends Stretches for easing aches in their backs and knees. And his work didn’t ask him to use…

4 min.
five poems

Eden One day, the boy who lived next door began to eat the flowers in his mother’s garden. He started with the herbs she grew along the borders: pungent sage and fragrant thyme, medicinal oregano. Before too long, sensing he was onto something, he turned to tasting roses, irises, and then, as if he doubted he would find true love, the petals of the daisies, one by one. By August it got dangerous: he ate a foxglove plant, which made his heart skip beats. They rushed him to the hospital while we prayed hungrily for God’s forgiveness, not recognizing what he really craved was to be noticed, and not be cast out of our delicious earthly paradise. The Love Boat My niece and I assemble it; it takes all afternoon, so many tiny pieces spread across the kitchen table, shiny as a princess’s best gems. My niece is six and lives across…

27 min.
if you see something, say something

ONE DAY LAST SPRING, SHORTLY AFTER my rueful, fiercely funny 91-year-old father had entered the hospital for what, with characteristic irony, he was calling “the last hurrah,” I thought of something he’d once said to me. In the summer of 1968, when I was fourteen, my mother decided that I needed to take my head out of the stack of books I’d been reading, and asked my father to take me on at work. My father, like a lot of firefighters then and now, had a trade on the side. A painting contractor in suburban housing developments, he was, to put it mildly, a meticulous craftsman (bordering on the obsessive-compulsive in his attention to detail and neatness). I was not. From 2nd grade on, the Sisters of Mercy at my…

2 min.
two poems

My Inwardness The breakdown got up, wearing a short skirt, and full of gray matter that oozed out of her pores. She was about to impregnate my universe, taking her infant strolling in a horse-drawn buggy through the agitated crowd that had gathered in my brain. I don’t know, I’m on a barstool trying to work out something about narration: two men are talking. The world as an urn for dreams. I have a car, two dogs, a job, a television, and dreams. A watercolor of an orchid devouring a small child invades a rich man’s dream. If love is a fruit, it is a fruit with wings, an apple, the skin of an apple wrapped around a delicate tart. A fine, crinkly dress that falls off the shoulders of a pleasant person who recognizes you. Two men talk. About boa constrictors, how to dismember them. I look at my green skin. It is like a…

1 min.
two poems

Rogue I do not wish to be this elephant plagued with cemeteries and a mind that holds and holds, watertight, the layers of losses— and nuzzles the earth to turn up what it turns and sweeps at the earth with the grace of noses; I do not relish this thickness, these feet slung at the ankle with a leathery drape which dust up and pack down in cyclical fever the narrowing plots of survivable brush. I do not wish to be an un-tusked mother who whines, who thins in the corners of her sons’ eyes— not noting the tweak in each, the rivulet of current striking out, mutating, mutant— not predicting that made hysterical by loss an elephant goes rogue, rams a grey grief; lumbers its heady mass into the village becoming denatured, denatured and aroused to spectacular, vengeful killing sprees (its ears aflame, fanning, raw). As if losing species. As…