Joan Larkin

Square of Beveled Glass
January 6, 2014 Larkin Joan

Square of Beveled Glass


Hag––first thought.

I can’t be tender.


On my left face, in bathroom light,

a climbing-rope of flesh, next


to a seam.  Its knife-sharp sister

cut in clay on the right.  The two


bracket a frown.  Beads edge

my scalp––more rope inside the skin.


Eyes deep, under dark smears.

Tongue thrust out, a gargoyle joke.


Don’t wag that sick thing.                                 

For once, I can’t see


regrets night tosses up.

Only a face-shaped question mark.

Joan Larkin’s poetry includes My Body: New and Selected Poems (Hanging Loose Press, 2007) and Legs Tipped with Small Claws (Argos Books chapbook, 2012).  Previous books include Housework (Out & Out Books, 1975), A Long Sound (Granite Press, 1986), and Cold River (Painted Leaf Press, 1997). A new collection, Blue Hanuman, is forthcoming in 2014 from Hanging Loose Press. Larkin is the Grace Hazard Conkling Poet in Residence at Smith College for 2012-2014 and serves on the faculty of Drew University’s MFA Program in Poetry and Poetry in Translation.