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From Nicole Homer:

November 4, 2019

Let me

say it plain: I loved someone

and I failed at it. Let me say it
another way: I like to call myself wound

but I will answer to knife. Sometimes
I think we have the same name, Notquitelove. I want

to be soft, to say here is my underbelly and I want you
to hold the knife, but I don’t know what I want you to do:

plunge or mercy. I deserve both.

Underbelly

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From Jake Skeets:

October 29, 2019

Seep willow antler press against
the memory of the first man I saw naked.

His tongue a mosquito whispering
its name a hymn on mesquite,

my cheek. The things we see the other do
collapse words into yucca bone.

The Navajo word for eye
hardens into the word for war.

Buffalograss

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From Hai-Dang Phan:

October 24, 2019

River unfrozen and pooling
around the ankles of trees in springtime,
daring us closer. River asleep inside
the black night like a spent lover,
dreaming of being a chandelier of rain,
first velvet wet drops on bare skin. Go,
go on. Conveyor belt of clouds, destroyer
and preserver of towns, longest breath
of the earth, tell us what floating means
to you.

River to River

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From George David Clark:

October 21, 2019

May
this
reck-
less
sum
of
sum-
mer
freck-
les
kiss
by
kiss
be-
come
a
neck-
lace.

Sun on Your Shoulders

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From Hailey Leithauser:

October 17, 2019

O, she says (because she loves to say O),
O to this cloud-break that ravels the night,
O to this moon, its mouthful of sorrow,
O shallow grass and the nettle burr’s bite,

O to heart’s flare, its wobbly satellite,
O step after step in stumbling tempo

O, She Says

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From D.H. Lawrence:

September 7, 2019

Shall I tell you, then, how it is?

There came a cloven gleam,
Like a tongue of darkened flame,
To burn in me.

And so I seem
To have you still the same
In one world with me.

– Pentecostal

From Leah Umansky:

September 3, 2019

i am a promise awake with knowing
a pull in a thread
sprawling
a sputtering
a stuttering
a slant
a song
a rising
a falling
a driving to the edge & waiting
a waiting for the edge to fall
an edging closer to the fall
a wanting the fall to crush

– Desire [even in the time of the tyrant]

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