Lee Upton

My Fjord | Someone Else’s Someone Else
August 25, 2017 Upton Lee

My Fjord


I will sail through my own fjord and I will name the fjord My Fjord.

I know it’s incorrect to say that the Vikings wore horned helmets,

but I will wear a horned helmet, for my job is to correct history.

I’ll leap over vats of mead and let libations drench my puffy skirt.

(I like mead but it’s amazing how refreshing milk directly from the cow can be.)

And then I will sail on My Fjord plowing through every flaming

funeral.  Enough celebrations of victory over life.

And who will stop my marauding?

For these are my violent decades,

and everyone everywhere from all time:

those are my own people.



Someone Else’s Someone Else


If it’s not about us
is it only about someone else?
Does someone else’s illusion
beat someone else’s trick?
The trick I like best:
the cloak of invisibility.
Not to be invisible, exactly–
but I can’t help but wish
that sometimes I wouldn’t
see what I’m seeing—
when seeing the worst.
Or I could wear the cloak of silence
when silence isn’t safe.
I suppose when silence isn’t safe
someone else’s tongue
will either sharpen or rust
someone else’s knife.
Even when it’s not about us
it must be about
someone else and us.

Lee Upton’s most recent book of poetry is The Day Every Day Is (Saturnalia, 2023). Her comic novel, Tabitha, Get Up, is forthcoming in May 2024.