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Hollyhocks
from Karen Whalley's
Rented Violin, The
The moment a man questions the meaning of his life, he is sick.
—Sigmund Freud

I don't remember when I stopped
Questioning. Maybe it was when
My neighbor Marge lost her daughter
To cancer, buried without her hair.
Marge didn't mention it
When she carried a bowl
Of cherry tomatoes over
And stood in the cidery shade
Of a small-leafed tree, not talking
Across the fence. This heat's blinding,
She said, and held a long salute
Above her eyes, twisting her sad
Gray braid into knot at the nape.
Why didn't she say something?

I look a little foolish as I look
Back now, standing waist-deep in yarrow,
Happy as a hat, checking for leaf miners,
As if we both had time enough
To speculate the way we did
On what color you'd call the hollyhocks.
As if pink weren't enough of a word.
Maybe what she needed
When the call came from Idaho
Was to pick a bowl of cold tomatoes.
Maybe she needed to be
Any old woman in the world but her
Stooping to tall hollyhocks
And searching her mind
For just the right shade of pink.
highlighted
at the press

Help publish Indigo by Ellen Bass and Boost Our Spring Poetry Season


“You may have to break/ your heart, but it isn't nothing/ to know even one moment alive,” writes Ellen Bass in Indigo

 

Bring this transformational new poetry book to life! With your help, Indigo will be published by Copper Canyon Press in spring 2020 alongside nine other extraordinary collections. 

 

Make your pledge on Kickstarter today.

 

As a nonprofit publisher of poetry, only half of our overall operational expenses are covered by book sales, so each pledge helps us to sustain our community-powered model of getting poetry into the hands of those who'll benefit from it. We turn to our community (that's you!) to help us continue to publish poetry that matters. Thank you for helping us get there!

 

Brown and Sze Named National Book Award Finalists

 

Congratulations to Jericho Brown (The Tradition) and Arthur Sze (Sight Lines), finalists for the 2019 National Book Award in Poetry! The National Book Awards, given annually by the National Book Foundation, were established in 1950 to celebrate the best writing in America. Winners will be announced at the Awards Ceremony on November 20, 2019. Past Copper Canyon Press National Book Award winners include C.D. Wright, Hayden Carruth, W.S. Merwin, and Ruth Stone.

 

View the complete list of this year's finalists here.

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Taos Poetry Workshop with Ellen Bass and Jericho Brown
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Joan Blatz reviews
Shadow Of Sirius, The

by W. S. Merwin

Although I'm very old, I find in poetry something new and beautiful and enlivening. It's never too late!

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