Dorianne Laux

June 12, 2014 Laux Dorianne


Poem beginning with a line from Gwendolyn Brooks


I am not deceived, I do not think it is still summer. I

see the leaves turning on their stems. I am

not oblivious to the sun as it lowers on its stem, not

fooled by the clock holding off, not deceived

by the weight of its tired hands holding forth. I

do not think my dead will return.  They will not do

what I ask of them.  Even if I plead on my knees.  Not

even if I kiss their photographs or think

of them as I touch the things they left me.  It

isn’t possible to raise them from their beds, is

it?  Even if I push the dirt away with my bare hands? Still-

ness, unearth their faces.  Bring me the last dahlias of summer.

Pulitzer Prize finalist Dorianne Laux’s Only As the Day is Long: New and Selected Poems is available from W.W. Norton as are her award winning books, Facts about the Moon and The Book of Men.  A text book, Finger Exercises for Poets, is forthcoming from W.W. Norton as well as a new book of poems, Life on Earth. She is founding faculty at Pacific University’s Low Residency MFA Program and teaches private workshops in Richmond, CA and online.  She is vice board chair for the Raleigh Review.