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Fall/Winter 2017

Wyatt Townley


Before we could meet across the room
across a thousand miles
with a dozen years between us
we would have to learn to count
on what wound its way
from the feet up the turning

staircase of the spine and out the mouth
because the feet kept running
from what the mouth was saying
then the mouth would run
on and on while the feet stayed put

and isn’t this the project of a lifetime
to live in one house

bounding up from the basement
feet and gut and heart and head
together up the wooden stairs
to the first floor and the second
where the view opens out
and a squirrel on a branch
freezes       his eye on you

whatchagonna do now
whatchagonna do

Wyatt Townley is Poet Laureate of Kansas Emeritus. Her work has been read by Garrison Keillor on NPR, featured by Ted Kooser in “American Life in Poetry,” and published in journals including The North American Review, Nimrod, The Paris Review, New Letters, Prairie Schooner, and The Yale Review. The poems in this issue are from her forthcoming book, Rewriting the Body.



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