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Recorded for Poem-a-Day, April 2, 2018.
About this Poem 

“‘Agatha’ is a poem I wrote while staring at paintings of St. Agatha. St. Agatha endured unspeakable violence but kept her faith in a holy power and the other world, in spite of the cruelty of this one. ‘Agatha’ is a poem from my new book, Milk, which is about the power of creativity and love.”
—Dorothea Lasky

Agatha

They are not real
She said from the cellar
And slowly unveiled
The flat scope
Lizards and their eggs
That I hang around the neck
You will break your legs
He warned me
And I believed him
Ruby edgings around
The mushroom-colored stones
And the man who told me
The women
Are like pictures in a book
They are not real
And so I believed him
Despite all the years
Finally free
In the end of an era
She held her breasts
On a golden platter
Despite the pain
And blessings everywhere
Eat she said
And they ate
They did

Copyright © 2018 by Dorothea Lasky. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on April 2, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

Copyright © 2018 by Dorothea Lasky. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on April 2, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

Dorothea Lasky

Dorothea Lasky

Born on March 27, 1978, in St. Louis, Missouri, Dorothea Lasky received her BA from Washington University.

by this poet

poem

You thought I’d flipped the switch and I hadn’t
You thought I’d left the window open
And I wouldn’t
You thought I’d turn the dial up
But I didn’t
You thought I’d ring the sun the super
But I shouldn’t
You thought I’d unlock the beehive
But I wouldn’t
You thought I’d sing

poem

If you can’t trust the monitors
Then why do they have the monitors
If you can’t trust the cars
Then why have the cars
If you can’t trust that I think you’re hot
Then why do you look so good
Turning me on that way that you do
If you can’t trust the people
Then why have the

poem

Because speaking to the dead is not something you want to do
When you have other things to do in your day
Like take out the trash or use the vacuum
In the edge between the stove and cupboard
Because the rat is everywhere
Crawling around
Or more so walking
And it doesn’t even