Michelle Boisseau's Among the Gorgons (U of Tampa, 2016)
Favourite passages from Michelle's last book following her death from cancer last year:
a spread of stars we found
ourselves side by side,
two fluences shading into each other
while a score of fingers scored
the delta's tranquil riot.
end of 'Some Years in the History of Love Poetry'
So let's walk the ruins, let's walk along the ocean
and listen to death's undying devotion.
last stanza of 'Death Gets into the Suburbs'
The pleasure of knowing oneself
is knowing one's plenty.
end of 'Hubbubbing'
While you drag your noise
over us, we're living our
farfetched lives, driving
on wipsy roads
to miniscule jobs
as we furtively
tuck things under roofs
and talk in glitters.
opening stanza of 'Flyover Country'
...then like a typo, her tumor was repeated.
The catch in the brain frayed and spread
ambitiously like a city. Faster, faster
boats emptied settlers.
from 'Wax for the Sleigh Runners'
Grasses switch, vectors
of birds: carry me, carry me
like a mite on a feather.
Since our mother died my sister and I
have stalked old ladies crossing the street
or tediously scaling flights of stairs.
Sex is a struck gong
rolling its waves ever onward.
This is my body of evidence.
Its jurisdiction grows like nebulae.
end of '92-Year-Old Nude Descending a Staircase'
Ugly is the mother of the sublime--dreadful
and magnetic, it sucks you over edges
with the torque of awe, so much like love
it must be love.
My story's told with corners. From all four
dark paint crowds my tallow body glowing
in muscular gloom.
from 'Gallery Slave: After Caravaggio'
Here I be monsters
wiggling luminous jungles slicked with eggs
worms blooming eyes and the deep sighs
of swimming mountains nursing mountains
from 'Body Wholly Body'
Winter has packed off its steel glare
and skipped town without a mourner.
opening stanza of 'Continental Drift'
The antique peace
of a ticking clock. The cries of sledding outside.
the portrait is resolved, a masterpiece,
not the old trouble spots the painter sees.
end of 'Once Again'
A billion seconds ago
I ripped through Ohio and half a dozen boyfriends
in two million seconds and you spread a quilt
with your first wife by the Tidal Basin.
from 'Million Million'
How could I know, how could anyone
but a saint know that as I was rolling
in the dark seas of grief, a small craft
was being built in me and now by the time
the nets are spooled over laps for mending
and the singing begins, the frank exchange
between moon and moonlight is amping up.
last stanza of 'The Voyage of the Sentence Begins'