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Onesimus

By Tania Runyan Poetry

Since I stole your money, Philemon, and even more, myself, the body that broke earth and stacked stones at daybreak while you slept, you have every right to lash me till the whites of my intestines show, brand FUG on my forehead, or throw me to the lions, who love especially the taste of escaped…

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Elegy for D.S.

By Philip Metres Poetry

Comfort, give comfort to my people, says your God…. —Isaiah 40:1-5 Until the day falls there is nothing I can say, my friend. Until the mountain kneels. He suffered so long in wordless suffering, a pain without wounds. May your brother, who belongs now to remember, be restored to light as wood is by ember.…

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Late Easter, Spring Come Lately

By Brett Foster Poetry

She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. In one of John Donne’s under-read hymns, on his sickness, he claims one place held Paradise and Calvary—Adam’s disgrace, too: over whose tree we choose…

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Our Heads against the Walls

By Sydney Lea Poetry

“I didn’t get in trouble whenever I drank, but whenever I got in trouble I was drinking,” says Wayne. We’re sitting together with ten inmates in folding chairs. I like Wayne, I like his thinking, I even like his God and his prayers. The herd of Morgan horses in his pasture comes alive with light…

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Leeks

By Richard Spilman Poetry

We planted the seeds in the spring And up they came innocuous as crabgrass. The tomatoes soon lorded over them, And even the jalapenos, sad lumps Hanging from their limbs like mittens From children playing in the snow. They stayed that way all summer, And before the frosts of November We pulled them up, declaring…

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Imperative

By Richard Spilman Poetry

Go then into the spare light of dawn, Into the sparkling rime, from the long dream Of yes and no, stand still as the falcon passes Close behind and then in a rush of feathers Embraces the crooked pole and its power line; Go, believing in some destination, onto the shore Where destination founders, where…

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Putting Out into the Deep from Gloucester

By Paul Mariani Poetry

The sea wind whispers and the tall oaks shake, their leaves shimmering in the August noon. And now the dry grass wrinkles and the floorboards flame. Saffron motes, a distant bird cry, this brackish sea. What was it you figured the wind might say? The oaks sway gently this way and that. Like young girls…

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The Harrowing

By Betsy Sholl Poetry

Steep concrete stairs leading up to the empty stadium’s ledge— and was it a moment’s lapse, that one step out onto air? Or was there a clamor, a shrieking inside, a pack chasing her, creatures who prodded and leered, who for so long, like sleeping dogs, she gingerly stepped around, and perhaps had come to…

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Minium

By Melissa Range Poetry

The monk stipples the page with convoluted trails of lead toasted rust red, brick red, the color first used for rubric and for miniature. Three thousand tiny dots prick the initials, as if the text itself were pierced with nails, red edging each green, black, or yellow letter to embolden the story of Christ’s dolor…

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Orpiment

By Melissa Range Poetry

King’s yellow for the king’s hair and halo, mixed if the monastery can’t afford the shell gold or gold leaf to crown the Lord, to work the letters of his name, the Chi-Ro, in trumpet spirals and triquetras, the yellow a cheap and lethal burnishing, the hoard not gold but arsenic and sulfur. The Word…

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