poem index

The Cold War [excerpt]

Kathleen Ossip
                                             Craft is a synthesis: thought in the service of
                                             understanding. Think hard in order to open to
                                             understanding: that is craft

K. was hungrily made.

K. is an American creation.

K. cannot recommend realism.

K. cannot recommend surrealism.

K. cannot recommend plain speech.

K. cannot recommend free association.

K. can recommend song:

      The tug of the past.
      Don't let go so fast
      of what you're haunted by—
      It'll last till it lasts.

                                 The former things                      pass away

Craft will take us through this wood.

From The Cold War, published by Sarabande Books. Copyright © 2011 by Kathleen Ossip. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

Kathleen Ossip

by this poet


I’m afraid of death
because it inflates
the definition
of what a person
is, or love, until
they become the same,
love, the beloved,

I’m afraid of death
because it invents
a different kind of
time, a stopped clock
that can’t be reset,