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About this poet

Nicole Callihan is the author of Translucence, co-written with Samar Abdel Jaber (Indolent Books, 2018); Downtown (Finishing Line Press, 2017); The Deeply Flawed Human (Deadly Chaps, 2016); and SuperLoop (Sock Monkey Press, 2014). She teaches at New York University's Tandon School of Engineering and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

dwelling

that winter it was so cold
I had nowhere to go but inside

my heart was a clock on the kitchen wall
and I tacked up curtains to keep

anyone from looking in on my liver
up river  snow kept coming

and the aching thing ached still
husband it was yours for the taking

I clanged pots against my radiator thighs
duct-taped my mouth  all the doors

if only we could lose the hour
if only we could witness a single bloom

listen  if spring ever comes
I will open these windows to you

and beat this old rug of a soul clean
the house will be pristine

and I will be your wife again

Copyright © 2017 by Nicole Callihan. “dwelling” was originally published in American Poetry Review. Used with permission of the author.

 

Copyright © 2017 by Nicole Callihan. “dwelling” was originally published in American Poetry Review. Used with permission of the author.

 

Nicole Callihan. Photo credit: Amanda Field.

Nicole Callihan

Nicole Callihan is author of Translucence, co-written with Samar Abdel Jaber (Indolent Books, 2018).

by this poet

poem

Our paper house sat
on the banks of the red river

and though mother
wasn’t like other mothers

I was like other girls
trapped and lonely

and painting pictures
in the stars. I was slick

with old birth or early longing,
already halfway between

who I wanted to be

poem
& of the lattermath I can only say 
that with the rain the cattails grew so high 
that the longing nearly subsided
this morning I am all moonshine on the snowbank
clockwise back to a better self I am
tenderfoot daisywheel though yesterday I was
warpath and daydreams of underfoot animals
o my fishhook in
2
poem

I walked to the end of the pier
and threw your name into the sea,
and when you flew back to me—
a silver fish—I devoured you,
cleaned you to the bone. I was through.
But then you came back again:
as sun on water. I reached for you,
skimmed my hands over the light of you.
And

2