Old Piano

It took everything to move it in.
Sideways, on a wheeled cart,
dead-now Steve holding the thing
steady while I carried it, pulled it in
     the corner myself.

My mother was proud—one
broken leg, out of tune.
No one knew …

Inked

Inked

Inked, by Corinna McClanahan Schroeder. Texas Review Press, 2015. $9, 55 pages.

The bildungsroman, or coming-of-age story, is a literary category that contains some of the most well-loved books in all of literature: To Kill A Mockingbird, Jane

What Adam Knew

Back in Texas, August, I’d lie on the lawn
topless. The neighbors didn’t know me
from Adam. Nor the landlord, nor the old man
stealing peaches, stuffing them into a brown paper bag
and sneaking off down the street like …

Plane to Plane

Which is worse, taking off or landing.
To a goose under the gun, the latter would
stun the full-bellied flutter of a grand-standing
angel into a heavy sack of flesh and blood.
Thud. So we traipse from plane to plane,…

Nicotine

Nicotine

Nicotine, by Gregor Hens. Translation from German by Jen Calleja. Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2015. $12, 168 pages.

There is no acceptable vice that generates instantaneous revulsion as smoking does now. The division between smokers and non-smokers is like day and …

Sacred Geography: Dispatches from India

Sacred Geography: Dispatches from India

Ganges Dawn

Predawn, everyone’s awake, Kashi’s jumping.
Excluding the homeless thousands who are unawake.
I’m walking cautiously to the ghats in the semi-dark through littered streets, trying to distinguish trash from cardboard and newspaper humps of low-castes sleeping, groaning while …

Have at You Now!

Have at You Now!

Have at You Now!, by John Gery. WordTech Communications, 2014. $18, 96 pages.

The poet John Gery is deeply concerned with the propensity of those in power to perpetrate mass violence. Expressed most directly in his 1996 book Nuclear Annihilation