About this poet

On May 31, 1946, Susan Wood was born in Commerce, Texas. She received her BA from East Texas State University and her MA from University of Texas, Arlington, before continuing her graduate studies at Rice University.

Wood, who has taught high school and worked as a newspaper and magazine editor, is the author of three books of poems, Asunder (Penguin, 2001); Campo Santo (1991), which was the 1991 Lamont Poetry Selection; and Bazaar (1980). She received the Guggenheim Fellowship for poetry in 1998.

She is an associate professor of English at Rice University.

Daily Life

Susan Wood, 1936
A parrot of irritation sits
on my shoulder, pecks
at my head, ruffling his feathers
in my ear. He repeats
everything I say, like a child
trying to irritate the parent.
Too much to do today: the dracena
that's outgrown its pot, a mountain
of bills to pay and nothing in the house
to eat. Too many clothes need washing
and the dog needs his shots.
It just goes on and on, I say
to myself, no one around, and catch
myself saying it, a ball hit so straight
to your glove you'd have to be
blind not to catch it. And of course
I hope it does go on and on
forever, the little pain,
the little pleasure, the sun
a blood orange in the sky, the sky
parrot blue and the day
unfolding like a bird slowly
spreading its wings, though I know,
saying it, that it won't.

From The Book of Ten, published by University of Pittsburgh Press. Copyright © 2011 by Susan Wood. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

From The Book of Ten, published by University of Pittsburgh Press. Copyright © 2011 by Susan Wood. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

Susan Wood

Susan Wood

In 1946, Susan Wood was born in Commerce, Texas