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Recorded for Poem-a-Day, August 18, 2017.
About this Poem 

Copyright © 2017 by Carl Adamshick. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on August 18, 2017, by the Academy of American Poets.

Epithalamium

Here you go
light low and long
in the fields
at sunset and sunrise
Everything twice
a doubled existence
two nows
two thens
two names
yours and the other one
also yours
folded into a paper boat
the points of which
constellate stars

Carl Adamshick

Carl Adamshick

Adamshick’s debut poetry collection, Curses and Wishes (Louisiana State University Press, 2011), was selected by Marvin Bell for the 2010 Walt Whitman Award. 

by this poet

poem
should be green 
to represent an ocean.
It should have two stars 
in the first canton, 
for us and navigation. 
They should be of gold thread, 
placed diagonally, 
and not solid, 
but comprised of lines. 
Our flag should be silky jet. 
It should have a wound,
a red river the sun must ford
when flown at half-mast
poem
I always thought death would be like traveling
in a car, moving through the desert,
the earth a little darker than sky at the horizon,
that your life would settle like the end of a day
and you would think of everyone you ever met,
that you would be the invisible passenger,
quiet in the car, moving through the
poem
We took your food and in a few days 
you'll see we took your excrement.

We've devised such intricate rules. 	

We've agreed, signed papers. We took the papers.

We took your pain, your dignity. 
We took your language and watched 
as religion fell from you.

We took your death,
strung it as a jewel on a silver