The closet where the black sweaters hang. Where the game of backgammon is played
with the thin wafers left over from communion. Of course they break and the crumbs
travel everywhere, refugees so small that even the mice turn carnivorous, squeaking with
pleasure even though they haven’t yet begun to eat.
And how tight will that wire wrap the barbs inside itself? All objects when abandoned
develop a talent for self-loathing. If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at
all. How else could the elbows wear so thin? How else could the bird fly into your
Daniel Bourne’s books include The Household Gods and Where No One Spoke the Language. His poems can be found in, among others, Field, Ploughshares, American Poetry Review, Pleiades, West Branch, Guernica, Salmagundi, Shenandoah, Prairie Schooner, and North American Review. His translations of Polish political poet Tomasz Jastrun are in Penguin’s anthology of Eastern European poetry, Child of Europe, and in Norton’s Against Forgetting: Twentieth-Century Poetry of Witness. He teaches at The College of Wooster, where he edits Artful Dodge.