Christina Pugh

Imagined Corners
January 15, 2012 Pugh Christina

Imagined Corners


At the corner where the transept cuts the nave,

bird’s-eye architecture mirrors the still cross-

section of a cross; and who’s to say it wouldn’t

look that way, if dissected—row upon row

of sitting, sitting, then rising or kneeling

in the litany’s slender choreographies?

They also serve who only stand and wait, Milton

cautioned from the dark.  My watch has

stopped at eternal ten past nine, and I’m

thinking again of a woman with lupus, another

with MS: two letters tattoo an anatomy’s

watch-springs.  And then there’s the transverse

cut of the ovary: botanical eggs that dilate in glass,

as the model tibouchina, glory-bush, perhaps:

the cinquefoil glitters its five white polyps,

or some see a waving skull on a stem.

Christina Pugh is the author of four books of poems including Perception (Four Way Books, 2017), which was named one of the top books of 2017 by Chicago Review of Books. A recent Guggenheim fellow in poetry, she is a professor in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago and consulting editor for Poetry.