April is Poetry Month: Poem a Day #9

Backpost. I know that I published this particular poem-a-day, as well as a few others, but they seem to have disappeared . . . At least, I think that I know . . .

Taken from the Knopf site; direct link below.


Lucie Brock-Broido is no stranger to darkness, particularly darkness of the interior variety; but in her recent collection Stay, Illusion she often reveals the struggle to embrace what is exterior — the “visible world” she pulls toward in this poem, with her characteristic playfulness in the face of sorrow, and wry self-understanding.


Dear Shadows,

If it gets any darker in here no one will ever be able to see again, like cats

With their eyes sewn shut at birth.

I could barely stand to write what I just wrote just now.

On the heavy walnut table — numbles for roasting on a truss of fire,

The loin, a spit, an iron moving in a fit of blood.

Here, sit in the lap of me and purr.

Once in the imagination’s feckless luck, in the excelsior of living wild, I wore a pinafore

Of linsey-woolsey cloth — knowing he was too shy to unbutton it in back.

Miss Stein would never, not in this life, appear unto my vex of work.

What is not ever said you can’t take back.

Goats slaughtered young would have made the softest gloves for him, his hands.

Pronouns are not to be trifled with, possessive ones or otherwise.

(Mine is a gazelle, of course.)

I am of a fine mind to worship the visible world, the woo and pitch and sign of it.

And all that would be buried in the drama of my going on.

~ Lucie Brock-Broido