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About this Poem 

"Once, during the blistering, red-edged heat of early July in New York City, I took a long walk home from a bad date of drinking rosé, passing, in a foul mood, through the various neighborhoods of Brooklyn where everything and everyone seemed to be happy but the heat-stifled trees and me and the anxious bees hovering around spent flowers. In the morning I got up to write, and, while I was trying to make a different poem, this came out. Initially titled ‘Wozu Dichterin,’ a riff feminizing the title of Heidegger’s essay ‘Wozu Dichter?’ (‘Why-For Poets?’ or ‘What Are Poets For?’), it proposes to tell the vocation of a (female) poet, and is as close as I’ve come to writing an ars poetica."
—Monica Ferrell

Poetry

There is nothing beautiful here
However I may want it. I can’t
Spin a crystal palace of this thin air,
Weave a darkness plush as molefur with my tongue
However I want. Yet I am not alone
In these alleys of vowels, which comfort me
As the single living nun of a convent
Is comforted by the walls of that catacomb
She walks at night, lit by her own moving candle.
I am not afraid of mirrors or the future
—Or even you, lovers, wandering cow-fat
And rutting in the gardens of this earthly verge
Where I too trod, a sunspot, parasol-shaded,
Kin to the trees, the bees, the color green.

Copyright © 2013 by Monica Ferrell. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-A-Day on May 27, 2013.

Copyright © 2013 by Monica Ferrell. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-A-Day on May 27, 2013.

Monica Ferrell

Monica Ferrell

Monica Ferrell is the author of the poetry collection Beasts for the Chase: Poems (Sarabande Books, 2008).

by this poet

poem

I would have liked then for someone to touch me
So I could know the purpose of this hardship.
Black-eyed and impassive as a canyon,
From the hive of my mind, I looked at their faces 
As I moved between rows of espaliered pears.
I only intended for someone to show
Me, once, an affection

2
poem
If my love for you were a teacup,
I would praise it for its blue. I’d consider
Its delicate handle, the pictures painted there
Of ladies, of their parasols.
But my love is not a teacup,
 
It is not even the tar pit from which we draw
Fodder for
2
poem
Man shaped out of mud
And made to speak and love—
Let's stick in him a little whisperer,

A bucket with two holes.
Let's give him the Great Deceiver,
A blood-stone.

A church with a vaulted ceiling
Where the White and Blue Niles meet.
A dog who cries after dark.

Everyone has a heart,
Even the people who don't.