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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Tony Hoagland
Tony Hoagland
Born on November 19, 1953, in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, Tony Hoagland...
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FURTHER READING
Poems About Breakups and Divorce
"To Speak of Woe That Is in Marriage"
by Robert Lowell
The Aeneid, Book IV, [So, you traitor]
by Virgil
A Book Of Music
by Jack Spicer
After Love
by Sara Teasdale
Apart (Les Séparés)
by Louis Simpson
Chaos Is the New Calm
by Wyn Cooper
Company
by Karen Leona Anderson
Dear Miss Emily
by James Galvin
Donal Óg
by Isabella Augusta, Lady Gregory
Family Reunion
by Jeredith Merrin
Footprint on Your Heart
by Gary Lenhart
Good Night
by Wilhelm Müller
Heart's Needle
by W. D. Snodgrass
I May After Leaving You Walk Quickly or Even Run
by Matthea Harvey
In Praise of Their Divorce
by Tony Hoagland
Man and Wife
by Robert Lowell
Multiple Man: Guest-starring me & you
by Gary Jackson
One Art
by Elizabeth Bishop
Pleasure
by Katie Peterson
Provisional
by Catherine Bowman
Remember
by Christina Rossetti
Sita
by Jason Schneiderman
The Gift
by Sara Teasdale
The Primer
by Christina Davis
The Vampire Bride [I am come—I am come!]
by Henry Thomas Liddell
This Was Once a Love Poem
by Jane Hirshfield
To Earthward
by Robert Frost
When We Two Parted
by George Gordon Byron
Poems about Divorce
Ebb
by Edna St. Vincent Millay
Failing and Flying
by Jack Gilbert
Family Reunion
by Jeredith Merrin
Good Night
by Wilhelm Müller
Hey Allen Ginsberg Where Have You Gone and What Would You Think of My Drugs?
by Rachel Zucker
In Praise of Their Divorce
by Tony Hoagland
Mag
by Carl Sandburg
Ring
by Melissa Stein
The World as Seen Through a Glass of Ice Water
by Dobby Gibson
Why should a foolish marriage vow
by John Dryden
Poems about Voice
Hearing your words and not a word among them (Sonnet XXXVI)
by Edna St. Vincent Millay
If My Voice Is Not Reaching You
by Afzal Ahmed Syed
If the ocean had a mouth
by Marie-Elizabeth Mali
Lift Every Voice and Sing
by James Weldon Johnson
Meeting at Night
by Robert Browning
Mrs. Cavendish and the Dancer
by Stephen Dunn
On Silence
by R. Zamora Linmark
Prayer from a Mouse
by Sarah Messer
Silences
by John Montague
Speedway
by Cedar Sigo
The Keeper's Voice
by Mike Carson
The Little Mute Boy
by Federico García Lorca
The Man Whose Voice Has Been Taken From His Throat
by Naomi Shihab Nye
The Voice
by Thomas Hardy
Time
by Chris Martin
Voices
by Sharon Olds
Why is Quiet "Kept"?
by Paul Hoover
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Coming and Going

 
by Tony Hoagland

My marriage ended in an airport long ago.
I was not wise enough to cry while looking for my car,

walking through the underground garage;
jets were roaring overhead, and if I had been wise

I would have looked up at those heavy-bellied cylinders
and seen the wheelchairs and the frightened dogs inside;  

the kidneys bedded in dry ice and Styrofoam containers.
I would have known that in synagogues and churches all over town 

couples were gathering like flocks of geese 
getting ready to take off,  while here the jets were putting down 

their gear, getting ready for the jolt, the giant tires 
shrieking and scraping off two 

long streaks of rubber molecules,
that might have been my wife and I, screaming in our fear.

It is a matter of amusement to me now,    
me staggering around that underground garage,  

trying to remember the color of my vehicle,
unable to recall that I had come by cab—

eventually gathering myself and going back inside,
quite matter-of-fact,

to get the luggage 
I would be carrying for the rest of my life.
About this poem:
"So much of what I love about poetry lies in the vast possibilities of voice, the spectacular range of idiosyncratic flavors that can be embedded in a particular human voice reporting from the field. One beautiful axis of voice is the one that runs between vulnerability and detachment, between 'It hurts to be alive' and 'I can see a million miles from here.' A good poetic voice can do both at once."

—Tony Hoagland






Copyright © 2013 by Tony Hoagland. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-A-Day on November 25, 2013. Browse the Poem-A-Day archive.
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