September 2, 2010The Arsenal Building, Central ParkNew York, NYFrom the Academy Audio Archive

About this poet

Monica Youn is the author of Ignatz (Four Way Books, 2010). She teaches at Princeton University and lives in Manhattan.

The Death of Ignatz (audio only)

Monica Youn

 

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Monica Youn

Monica Youn is the author of Ignatz (Four Way Books, 2010). She teaches at Princeton University and lives in Manhattan.

by this poet

poem

To section off
is to intensify,

to deaden.
Some surfaces

cannot be salvaged.
Leave them

to lose function,
to persist only

as armature,
holding in place

those radiant
squares

of sensation—
the body a dichotomy

poem
When you have left me
the sky drains of color

like the skin
of a tightening fist.

The sun commences
its gold prowl

batting at tinsel streamers
on the electric fan.

Crouching I hide
in the coolness I stole

from the brass rods 
of your bed.
poem

the trees all planted in the same month after the same fire

            each thick around
            as a man’s wrist

meticulously spaced grids cutting the sunshine

            into panels into planks
            and crossbeams of light

an incandescent architecture that is the