poem index


Catie Rosemurgy

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Catie Rosemurgy is the author of The Stranger Manual (Graywolf Press, 2009) and My Favorite Apocalypse (Graywolf Press, 2001). She is the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, as well as the Rona Jaffe Foundation Award. She teaches at the College of New Jersey and lives in Philadelphia.

by this poet

When I was young, I hid under the porch with a star in my throat.
When I got a little older, my mother opened the cupboard to let the fire out. 

I should’ve known the cliffs meant a coming blankness.
We should’ve noticed the competition growing deadly between the masts and the trees.
The problem wasn’t the
The arch in the bridge. The moment of architecture. 
The island where you lost your mother's keys. The photo she sent
of someone who looks like her walking to the point 
where the land becomes reminiscent of dissolving of flesh. 
The trees stamped onto our minds like traumas 
are supposed to be. The frightening

Thank god he stuck his tongue out.
When I was twelve I was in danger 
of taking my body seriously. 
I thought the ache in my nipple was priceless. 
I thought I should stay very still 
and compare it to a button, 
a china saucer, 
a flash in a car side-mirror, 
so I could name the ache either