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About this poet

Patrick Phillips was born in 1970 in Atlanta and raised in the Appalachian foothills of north Georgia. He attended Tufts University, and earned an MFA in Poetry at the University of Maryland, as well as a PhD in English Literature at New York University.

He is the author of three collections of poetry: Elegy for a Broken Machine (Knopf, 2015), Boy (University of Georgia Press, 2008), and Chattahoochee (University of Arkansas Press, 2004).

Phillips was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Copenhagen's Centre for Translation Studies, where he began translating When We Leave Each Other: Selected Poems of Henrik Nordbrandt (Open Letter, 2013), which won the Translation Prize of the American Scandinavian Foundation.

His other honors include the Kate Tufts Discovery Award from Claremont Graduate University, a Discovery/The Nation Prize from the 92nd Street Y, a Pushcart Prize, the Lyric Poetry Award from the Poetry Society of America, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.

He currently teaches at Drew University and lives in Brooklyn, New York.


Bibliography
Elegy for a Broken Machine (Knopf, 2015)
Boy (University of Georgia Press, 2008)
Chattahoochee (University of Arkansas Press, 2004).

Falling

The truth is that I fall in love
so easily because

it's easy.
It happens

a dozen times some days.
I've lived whole lives,

had children,
grown old, and died

in the arms of other women
in no more time

than it takes the 2-train
to get from City Hall to Brooklyn,

which brings me back
to you: the only one

I fall in love with
at least once every day—

not because
there are no other
 
lovely women in the world,
but because each time,

dying in their arms,
I call your name.

From Boy (University of Georgia Press, 2008). Copyright © 2008 by Patrick Phillips. Used with permission of University Georgia Press.

From Boy (University of Georgia Press, 2008). Copyright © 2008 by Patrick Phillips. Used with permission of University Georgia Press.

Patrick Phillips

Patrick Phillips

Patrick Phillips was born in 1970 in Atlanta and raised in the Appalachian foothills of north Georgia. He attended Tufts University, and earned an MFA in Poetry at the University of Maryland, as well as a PhD in English Literature at New York University.

by this poet

poem

The Chinese truck driver
throws the rope
like a lasso, with a practiced flick,

over the load:
where it hovers an instant,
then arcs like a willow

into the waiting,
gloved hand
of his brother.

What does it matter
that, sitting in traffic,
I glanced out the