Poem of the Week: October 22nd, 2014

Eric Weiskott, author of “Submit Seasonal Poems Two Months in Advance,” is a PhD student in English Language and Literature at Yale University. In addition to scholarly articles on Old and Middle English poetry, he has published poems in Canopic Jar, Cricket Online Review, Versal, and elsewhere.

By Eric Weiskott

I am writing autumn poems
in June, Doctor, my liver hurts,

I have started thinking in words
I don’t recognize. Please help me

kill myself. I love the summer
and what the fall inherits,

trees, the clarity of nighttime.
It is fall during each season

separately, but especially
during summer, which sometimes begins

two months in advance, and sometimes
earlier, the chicks melt, sometimes

summer begins in other countries,
in advance, indiscernibly,

one day it is clear to people
through and through.


Poem of the Week: October 15th, 2014

Susan Aizenberg is the author of a full-length collection of poetry, Muse, from Crab Orchard Poetry Series/SIUP and a chapbook length collection of poems, Peru. More of her work can be found in Volume 2, Issue 1 of burntdistrict.

By Susan Aizenberg

She would have cooked
his breakfast, eggs sunny-side up,
runny the way he liked them,
strong boiled coffee poured
and waiting, better than the diner.
But before the train screaming
through tunnels, his windowless office,
the idiots he had to “sir,”
he needed a space without her
or his children, so he dressed
in a crack of light from the bathroom,
held his shoes by two fingers,
and left them sleeping. That walk

to the diner was his time, last stars
fading out, sky lightening
from black to blue to white.
He walked in all weather,
let each season touch him all over,
lifted his face equally to rain
or sun. He liked to watch the old
houses stir awake, to nod to the woman
in her slippers on 27th, smoking
as she strolled her little mutt.
To step back smoothly
from the paper boy’s wild toss.

Milk bottles sweated on doorsteps,
sweet cream left on top,
and once, though he never told
this, he lifted one from its wire basket,
drank it down, right there, under
his neighbor’s winking porch light,
left the empty on the stoop.

Poem of the Week: October 1st, 2014

Carolyn Hembree’s first collection of poetry, Skinny, was published by Kore Press. Her poetry can also be found in Volume 1, Issue 2 of burntdistrict.

By Carolyn Hembree

The dead girl decks herself in redbud, red algae, red-shouldered hawk for me

She swims through reeds to my sick room

She burns sassafras in the mountain cave

She steeps black elder tea

She reads is smoke is smoke is smoke

She hangs gourds in a chinaberry

She hangs chinaberry and owl in eventide

She charms me with water mocassins

She charms them from water from skins from cans of lard

She puts her fingers and tongue through a treillage of green heron horse nettle

She molds double vowels to her gums – sweet gum woolly adelgid

She speaks through fever dreams in tongues without skulls

She is like the blood thrown from my window

She greens my sunken chassis in splendor

               o earthen vessel                o living water                o algaeic angel