Photo: Mike Morgan
Grace Cavalieri is Maryland’s Tenth Poet Laureate. She’s author of 26 collections of poetry. She has had several plays produced, most recently “Quilting The Sun,” NYC 2019. She founded, produces and hosts “The Poet and the Poem,” for public radio, 44 years on-air, now from The Library of Congress. For ten years, Cavalieri was poetry columnist/reviewer for The Washington Independent Review of Books. She has taught poetry workshops in colleges throughout the country. Her latest book is Grace Art-Poems and Paintings (Poets’ Choice Press,2021). She is the recipient of many honors and awards, including the 2013 Association of Writers & Writing Programs’ George Garrett Award, The American Association of University Women, Phi Beta Kappa, and The Corporation for Public Broadcasting Silver Medal.
Forget what I said before—
It’s evening in Tuscany.
Someone is making bread that will not grow stale,
others are picking carciofi.
The moon won’t speak one word
so covered with the moss of clouds.
I know someone who died, but stays.
I would live it all again.
Nothing is divested but the
crêpe myrtle that screams pink.
Nothing is enough but the
empty wastebasket where letters once were.
from The Man Who Got Away
Photo: Czarina Divina
David Keplinger is the author of eight books of poetry, including The World to Come (Conduit, April 2021) and Another City (Milkweed Editions, 2018), which was awarded the 2019 UNT Rilke Prize for a mid-career poet. His other books of prose poetry include The Prayers of Others (New Issues Press, 2006), winner of the Colorado Book Award, and The Most Natural Thing (New Issues Press, 2013). In 2020 he was the recipient of the Emily Dickinson Award from the Poetry Society of America. His books of translations include Forty-One Objects, his 2019 collaboration with Danish poet Carsten René Nielsen, which was a finalist for the 2020 National Translation Award.
That your shoes are two fish, a school that moves by the singular will. That the body is here, but elsewhere, too. That there exists a body of wind, one for you, one for the city, the country, the planet. That there’s one wind moving all of this just so. Even the bride in the white wedding gown. And the groom in the charcoal suit. The beautiful car that’s waiting for them. The vast night.
Photo: Scottish Poetry Library
Lorna Goodison, born in Kingston, Jamaica, is author of nine poetry collections, including her latest Collected Poems (UK: Carcanet, 2017). Forthcoming in 2021 is Mother Muse. A painter before she became a working poet, Goodison was educated at the Jamaica School of Art and the School of the Art Students League of New York. She was appointed poet laureate of Jamaica in 2017. In 2018, she received a Windham–Campbell Literature Prize, and in 2019, she was awarded the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry.
I AM BECOMING MY MOTHER
My mother raises rare blooms
and waters them with tea
her birth waters sang like rivers
my mother is now me
My mother had a linen dress
the colour of the sky
and stored lace and damask
to pull shame out of her eye.
I am becoming my mother
fingers smelling always of onions.