Books Magazine

Poetry Weekly

By Gabrielscala

The week’s best online poetry with excerpts, links and (occasional) commentary by yours truly. This week features poetry by Linda Gregg, Marianne Boruch, Mary Jo Salter and Persis Karim.


  • “Gnostics on Trial” by Linda Gregg:

Let us make the test. Say God wants you
to be unhappy. That there is no good.
That there are horrors in store for us
if we do manage to move toward Him.
Say you keep Art in its place, not too high.
And that everything, even eternity, is measurable.….read more at The Writer’s Almanac


  • “I Lost My Pen, I Lost My Keys” by Marianne Boruch:

I lost my pen, I lost my keys,
and my hat somewhere on a table,
the table its room, the field
its horizon, a road like….read more at Narrative


  • “Boulevard du Montparnasse” by Mary Jo Salter

Once, in a doorway in Paris, I saw
the most beautiful couple in the world.
They were each the single most beautiful thing in the world.
She could have been sixteen, perhaps; he twenty.
Their skin was the same shade of black: like a shiny Steinway.
And they stood there like a four-legged instrument
of a passion so grand one could barely imagine them
ever working, or eating, or reading magazine.
Even they could hardly believe it.….Read more at The Writer’s Almanac


  • “Other Mothers” by Persis Karim

Their sons who speak of a cause
As if it were their two feet
beneath them. That they could hold an idea
and a weapon at the same time.

The way they could fool themselves
Into thinking they were pure
And righteous, that the great stories
of God or country could keep them safe.….Read more at Split This Rock

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