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Here Be Monsters.

Is it the sea we wish? The sleep of the changeless?

--Theodore Roethke

 Me? I'm waiting for the cormorant to surface. Fennel seed
between my teeth & your salt in my beard I watch the hurried rain
become overflow become canal become bay.
 Yes, the cherry is blossoming behind the concertina blades in the
demolition yard. That we live here is beautiful sometimes.
I've seen the holes in the world where the rain sneaks through.
I've read the glyphs to the under-Gowanus world on corrugated
siding, ghost-thug portraits, a last species of oyster translated into
Mayan, into native aerosol. And what, pray tell, am I waiting for?
Here the sea lifted up, here what we have awoken into. You say the giant
squid has an almost vegetable soul carried senseless along whale roads.
Here a nor'easter & here a book of the dead.
Because mercury injected into the lymph of cadavers revealed the other
half of the known world, we leave the house & eat sushi on your
birthday--eel, urchin & shrimp split down their spine as though in
of something. Our friend in the hospital waits to be saved, for a net to
trawl the nodes of a deep we map in one held breath: here the milky way
shimmering & gasoline, here the interspecies moment between hubcap
& horseshoe crab. 

COLIN CHENEY'S first book, Here Be Monsters, was selected as a winner of the 2009 National Poetry Prize, and will be published in Spring 2010 by University of Georgia Press. His poems have appeared in Poetry, Gulf Coast, Ploughshares, and Crazyhorse. In 2006, Mr. Cheney was awarded a Ruth Lilly Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. He teaches at New York University, and lives in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, NY.

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Title Annotation:two poems
Author:Cheney, Colin
Publication:The American Poetry Review
Article Type:Poem
Date:Nov 1, 2009
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