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Wednesday, March 12, 2008 01:40 am

People's poetry

Jacqueline Jackson presents

Untitled Document aroundthecosmos poem #6

total eclipse the moon a
dull copper penny unblinking
visible now only in earthlight
its attendant winking star
soon to be light-drowned
the cold the cold is biting
how cold the moon how still

behind me on the street
multiple lurid stoplights
turn red green red green red
traffic sweeps its yellow
headlights ruby eyes trail
while I ponder stonehenge
mayan calendars and the
eons this dark earth was lit
by moon and stars alone
until hearth fires began
winking on in little clusters

© Jacqueline Jackson 2008 

In this endearing short poem by Californian Trish Dugger, we can imagine “what if?” What if we had been given “a baker’s dozen of hearts?” I imagine many more and various love poems would be written. Here Ms. Dugger, poet laureate of the city of Encinitas, makes fine use of the one patched but good heart she has.
Spare Parts
We barge out of the womb with two of them: eyes, ears,
arms, hands, legs, feet. Only one heart. Not a good
plan. God should know we need at least a dozen,
a baker’s dozen of hearts. They break like Easter eggs
hidden in the grass, stepped on and smashed.
My own heart is patched, bandaged, taped, barely
the same shape it once was when it beat fast for you.

Poem copyright © 2006 by Trish Dugger. Reprinted from Magee Park Poets: Anthology 2007 (No. 18, Friends of the Carlsbad City Library, 2006). American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Ted Kooser served as the U.S. poet laureate 2004-2006. For more information, go to www.americanlifeinpoetry.org.
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