poem index

poet

Mark Yakich

Mark Yakich is the author of The Importance of Peeling Potatoes in Ukraine (Penguin, 2008). He teaches at Loyola University New Orleans.

by this poet

poem
And I am not a pedestal.

We are not a handful of harmless
scratches on pale pink canvas.
Today is not the day to stop

looking for the woman
to save you. What was once
ivory is wood. What was once

whalebone is cotton.
My coif and corset are duly
fastened, and your shirttail is

tied in a diamond knot. 
You may
poem

When I was a boy and my fist
Would land into my father’s arm,

I’d cry out, and he’d say
Didn’t hurt me none.

He’s been dead six years now,
And my work is still to try

To beat myself up
And make the pain last.