Back to Issue Thirty-Three

In the Winter of My Inaugural Anxiety


January 20, 2017

inside the molehill    inside the mind

where a single wedge issue echoes like a pair
of blown house speakers    pissing air & sad boy

flatulence    the long-cluttered living room precipitates

a bitter uncoupling.    Evening grief accumulates    sleets
headstones    monuments    fleeces an iridescent boneyard over

the closest cemetery    fashions secondary coffins    bone-
white around distended mounds    age-old injuries rehomed

by light of bedside microscope. When I let the idyllic quiet

thistle—when a boorish hiccup engulfs me, Jonah-like—
when all I can think about is all I hold dear, what I deserve

to hold, & whether I am worthy of being held, I think of
my country’s undying dispute: Who crossed whose boundaries

imposing relief? Who’s snowing who? It wasn’t me. It’s only me.


Marcus Wicker is the author of Silencer (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) and Maybe the Saddest Thing (Harper Perennial), a National Poetry Series selection. His awards include a Tennessee Arts Fellowship, Ruth Lilly Fellowship, Pushcart Prize, as well as fellowships from Cave Canem, and The Fine Arts Work Center. He is Co-Poetry Editor of Southern Indiana Review, and an associate professor of English at the University of Memphis where he teaches in the MFA program.


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