Tuesday 9 April 2013

Consider the hands that write this letter

by Aracelis Girmay

Consider the hands
that write this letter.
The left palm pressed flat against the paper,
as it has done before, over my heart
in peace or reverence
to the sea or some beautiful thing
I saw once, felt once: snow falling
like rice flung from the giants' wedding,
or the strangest birds. & consider, then,
the right hand, & how it is a fist
within which a sharpened utensil,
similar to the way I've held a spade,
match to the wick, the horse's reins

Go to poets.org for the rest of this poem
it's worth it .

Aracelis Girmay was a finalist in the 2011 National Book Critics Circle Award in poetry for her collection Kingdom Animalia published by BOA Editions in October 2011. Her first book of poetry was entitled Teeth and published by Curbstone Press in 2007. She is an assistant professor of poetry at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA. Her current interests in poetry include poetry of the Americas, contemporary African American poetry, and poetry of the "political imagination."

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