May Swenson
Question by May Swenson

Question by May Swenson

Body my house my horse my hound what will I do when you are fallen Where will I sleep How will I ride What will I hunt Where can I go without my mount all eager and ...

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Water Picture by May Swenson

Water Picture by May Swenson

In the pond in the park all things are doubled: Long buildings hang and wriggle gently. Chimneys are bent legs bouncing on clouds below. A flag wags like a fishhook down ...

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Blue by May Swenson

Blue by May Swenson

Blue, but you are Rose, too, and buttermilk, but with blood dots showing through. A little salty your white nape boy-wide.Glinting hairs shoot back of your ears' Rose that ...

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The Woods At Night by May Swenson

The Woods At Night by May Swenson

The binocular owl, fastened to a limb like a lantern all night long, sees where all the other birds sleep: towhee under leaves, titmouse deep in a twighouse, ...

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Bleeding by May Swenson

Bleeding by May Swenson

Stop bleeding said the knife I would if I could said the cut. Stop bleeding you make me messy with the blood. I'm sorry said the cut. Stop or I will sink in farther said the ...

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That The Soul May Wax Plump by May Swenson

That The Soul May Wax Plump by May Swenson

My dumpy little mother on the undertaker's slab had a mannequin's grace. From chin to foot the sheet outlined her, thin and tall. Her face uptilted, bloodless, smooth, had a ...

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Little Lion Face by May Swenson

Little Lion Face by May Swenson

Little lion face I stopped to pick among the mass of thick succulent blooms, the twice streaked flanges of your silk sunwheel relaxed in wide dilation, I brought inside, ...

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Women by May Swenson

Women by May Swenson

Women Or they should be should be pedestals little horses moving those wooden pedestals sweet moving oldfashioned to the painted motions rocking of men horses the ...

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Analysis Of Baseball by May Swenson

Analysis Of Baseball by May Swenson

It’s about the ball, the bat, and the mitt. Ball hits bat, or it hits mitt. Bat doesn’t hit ball, bat meets it. Ball bounces off bat, flies air, or thuds ground (dud) ...

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Cardinal Ideograms by May Swenson

Cardinal Ideograms by May Swenson

A mouth. Can blow or breathe, be a funnel, or Hello. A grass blade or a cut. A question seated. And a proud bird's neck. Shallow mitten for two-fingered hand. ...

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7 Days On The Sea by May Swenson

7 Days On The Sea by May Swenson

Monday The world is a ball of water. See, it is round-sided. I move across its topside, upon the world, not in it. The boat is a comb, acomb over idle white hair. Waves ...

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Staying At Ed’s Place by May Swenson

Staying At Ed’s Place by May Swenson

I like being in your apartment, and not disturbing anything. As in the woods I wouldn't want to move a tree, or change the play of sun and shadow on the ground. The yellow ...

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The Shape Of Death by May Swenson

The Shape Of Death by May Swenson

What does love look like? We know the shape of death. Death is a cloud immense and awesome. At first a lid is lifted from the eye of light: there is a clap of sound, a white ...

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The James Bond Movie by May Swenson

The James Bond Movie by May Swenson

The popcorn is greasy, and I forgot to bring a Kleenex. A pill that’s a bomb inside the stomach of a man inside The Embassy blows up. Eructations of flame, luxurious ...

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Kiwi by May Swenson

Kiwi by May Swenson

Fruit without a stone, its shiny pulp is clear green. Inside, tiny black microdot seeds. Skin the color of khakiImagine a shaggy brown-green pelt that feels like felt. It's ...

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October by May Swenson

October by May Swenson

1 A smudge for the horizon that, on a clear day, shows the hard edge of hills and buildings on the other coast. Anchored boats all head one way: north, where the wind comes ...

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Feel Me by May Swenson

Feel Me by May Swenson

“Feel me to do right,” our father said on his deathbed. We did not quite know—in fact, not at all—what he meant. His last whisper was spent as through a slot in a wall. He left ...

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Motherhood by May Swenson

Motherhood by May Swenson

She sat on a shelf, her breasts two bellies on her poked-out belly, on which the navel looked like a sucked-in mouth— her knees bent and apart, her long left arm raised, ...

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Landing On The Moon by May Swenson

Landing On The Moon by May Swenson

When in the mask of night there shone that cut, we were riddled. A probe reached down and stroked some nerve in us, as if the glint from a wizard's eye, of silver, slanted out ...

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Sleeping With Boa by May Swenson

Sleeping With Boa by May Swenson

I show her how to put her arms around me, but she’s much too small. What’s worse, she doesn’t understand. And although she lies beside me, sticking out her tongue, it’s ...

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The Lowering by May Swenson

The Lowering by May Swenson

The flag is folded lengthwise, and lengthwise again, folding toward the open edge, so that the union of stars on the blue field remains outward in full view; a triangular ...

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The Tall Figures Of Giacometti by May Swenson

The Tall Figures Of Giacometti by May Swenson

We move by means of our mud bumps. We bubble as do the dead but more slowly. The products of excruciating purges we are squeezed out thin hard and dry. If we exude a ...

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Fountains Of Aix by May Swenson

Fountains Of Aix by May Swenson

Beards of water some of them have. Others are blowing whistles of water. Faces astonished that constant water jumps from their mouths. Jaws of lions are snarling water ...

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Feel Like A Bird by May Swenson

Feel Like A Bird by May Swenson

Feel like A Bird understand he has no hand instead A Wing close-lapped mysterious thing in sleeveless coat he halves The Air skipping there like water-licked boat ...

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Strawberrying by May Swenson

Strawberrying by May Swenson

My hands are murder-red. Many a plump head drops on the heap in the basket. Or, ripe to bursting, they might be hearts, matching the blackbirds's wing-fleck. Gripped to a reed ...

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