Poetry Textbook [poem]

Something about that textbook
keeps them bound:
takes a dangerous thing,
tames it;
takes an outflow of rabid emotion,
and restrains it;
Footnotes it so there can be no misconceptions;
Painstakingly explains it.

What was once, a living,
screaming writhing thing —
— what was once challenging
is now an artifact,

safely behind glass.
Now it’s time to sit and think:
Dissect it as it dies in your hands.

But after the experiment is complete —
You’ve checked off every stage —
If you check you’ll find the lines
Still breathe upon the page.


An original composition, for World Poetry Day 2017.

Featured image quotes Ezra Pound’s “In a Station of the Metropoetry


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