Started 2016 off with a towering stack of contemporary poetry, at the top of which is Boy with Thorn, a gorgeous and gut-wrenching collection by Rickey Laurentiis (1989-). I strongly recommend adding this book to your pile of reading material, too.
“A Southern Wind”
Quiet as a seed, and as guarded,
our walking took the shape of two people
uneasy together. I had the feeling
that on the anxious incline of that hill we gave the hill
a reason to be. What loneliness, what
privacy was in that? Hey, I said. Race me to the top?
Then is when I nearly tripped on the sly earth,
an earth shaping to itself again. A stone?
But, no, picking it up, bringing the wormed-through
black flesh of it to my height, I knew it for
an apple and gnashed and let the juices freak and down
my face. Don’t ask me why I did it. I know.
I know there are poisons like these we have
to feed each other, promises we try to hold–
though how can they be contained? I wanted to give you
what I could of me. To be personal, without
confession. I wanted to believe in the constancy of that hill.
Daylight was tiring. The air, secret, alone.
I won, you said. You did, I said. So we stood there.