This selection, chosen by Sundress intern Ryleigh Wann, is from A Net to Catch my Body in its Weaving by Katie Farris, released by Beloit Poetry Journal.
Standing in the Forest of Being Alive
I stand in the forest of being alive:
in one hand, a cheap aluminum pot
of chicken stock and in the other,
a heavy book of titles. O once, walking through
a cemetery I became terribly lost and could not
speak (no one living knows the grammar).
No one could direct me to the grave,
so I looked at every name.
Madness hung out over the gravel paths,
swaying like laundry.
A heavy bird flapped its wings over someone’s
sepulcher. Some of us are still putzes
in death, catching birdshit on our headstones.
Some of us never find what we’re looking for, praying
it doesn’t pour before we find our names; certain
we’re headed in the right direction, a drizzle begins,
and what’s nameless inside our veins
fluoresces, fluoresces in the rain.
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