Grey: Two Poems : Magazine : A Public Space

Two Poems

Poetry Kimberly Grey


There are a million griefs flying out there the president says
  we have unthinkable hugeness
 arms to hold us
they’re not suffering exactly but suffering exactly and it’s hard
  to distinguish a zero from
 an egg but no
there is only one that’s breakable we are the ones with neck bones
  we are absolutely beginning
 to understand that
there is no one ancient wail they are all immense and the president
  should not dare to stop
 our wishing
there was an end or at least a slower wound or a grocery store
  that would sell us some food
 and everywhere
there are people waiting to die people waiting for us to vote
  so they can be president and die
 one day too
their whole lives more important because they are more important
  because they tell us
 don’t worry
there are greater tragedies than you the president says there is
  no orthodox way to hold something
 dying you must be
there to let it shock you until you are all smashed and gold and flickering
  with hurt look out
 the window
there is sun and half of a large sea and the president is telling us we all
  have extravagant faces
 but he isn’t telling us
there are mistakes that even he has made and whatever lastness he creates
  will be ours we will have it
 to carry on
there and everywhere on our backs east and westly and afterwards if there
  are afterwords we’ll realize
 we never really knew
there was a way to say sorry without saying it without giving anything away
  how is it that we are
 always waiting
there like forget-me-nots waiting for our blueness to be picked how does
  a president con how does
 he soul and where
there by the building’s last wishbone there by the rapacious bouquet of bodies
  there by the towers
 of sad geniuses
there by the darkness made famous for being darkness for being one
  last wreckage to love but where
 there there.


Now the masses are rendering the world again
into designer houses and political campaigns,
and home is still a place we are sad,
  even when the president is not
on TV. Pain is a clump the size of Moscow
in our Russia-sized hearts, but when I tell you
your ribs are masterful I mean
  they are masterful.
I can’t imagine a better thing to know: that life
can alter life. See us move from place to place
  and regardless of time
zones, time keeps us breathing on some imaginary
axis. There are wars that aren’t happening and still
they are wars. They have ruined us to the point
  of living. And Eros and errors
have made us tenderer and tenderer. But pain
can become smaller like West Berlin. Come on,
living one, show me a bit of lung. Death isn’t
  always what’s happening.
No. 20

No. 20


Kimberly Grey’s work has appeared in the Southern Review, the Boston Review, TriQuarterly, and elsewhere. She is a Wallace Stegner Fellow in poetry.


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