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Thursday, Feb. 1, 2007 04:11 pm

People's poetry

Presented by Jacqueline Jackson

Untitled Document Grief can endure a long, long time. A deep loss is very reluctant to let us set it aside, to push it into a corner of memory. Here the Arkansas poet, Andrea Hollander Budy, gives us a look at one family’s adjustment to a death.
For Weeks After the Funeral
The house felt like the opera, the audience in their seats, hushed, ready, but the cast not yet arrived.
And if I said anything to try to appease the anxious air, my words would hang alone like the single chandelier
waiting to dim the auditorium, but still too huge, too prominent, too bright, its light announcing only itself, bringing more
emptiness into the emptiness.

Copyright © 2006 by Andrea Hollander Budy. First published in “Five Points” and included in her book, Woman in the Painting. Reprinted by permission of the author and Autumn House Press. This weekly column is supported by The Poetry Foundation, The Library of Congress, and the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. This column does not accept unsolicited poetry.

Ted Kooser served as the U.S. Poet Laureate from 2004-2006. For more information, go to


nearnorthsidepoem #2

talk about overkill walgreens and cvs aren’t walmart with their  four dollar seductive prescriptions but their big new ugly overstocked buildings are now               
squatting right across and right next to watt drugstore on north ninth where unassuming john watt has carried the hurt and the homeless on his tabs for ages his father and uncles before him why do we need so many pharmacies on one corner there are already ten walgreens   
and five cvses in town isn’t that enough for that matter who wants a faux stable saddles stalls straw probably no authentic oats or horse apples to go with our soup but it’s soon to be there on the square  
where afaf and jamal greeted us with joy when we came to eat the  healthiest food in town at our beloved holyland

©Jacqueline Jackson 2006