Today, October the Ninth, Having Just Read the Newspaper, the War Historian Writes a Poem to the Friend He Secretly Pines for on the Eve of What Is Merely the Latest in a String of Global Crises | Allison Shoemaker

This morning they shook the ground in North Korea
by splitting atoms. Last night
                                                  an eyelash lay
on your cheek, orphaned. Two worlds are intimate:
The Nation of Things That Fall Apart, and The Republic of Places 

We Can’t See.
The nape of the neck. The back of the knee.
The effects of elemental transmutation,
                                          the sounds your stomach made
when we skipped lunch to watch the news and worry.
A seismic rumble. Last night
                                            I left the eyelash there. What 
choice else? It has been shown—
molecules sense where there’s an ache. The distance,
each coiled inch
between my fingers and your flesh, burns, hums,
an alarm for the heart,

and a choice is made: fission or fusion.
My body stung in all the places I didn’t touch

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commentary | poetry | fiction | chicago | autumn 2007  
Household Poisons | Thomas King
It Begins when the Leaves Turn | Grace Wells
The Intolerable Nature of Yearning | Katie Kidder
Figure 2 | Lindsay Bell
Egressive | Amy Groshek
Kampala 2012 | Damian Dressick
Today, October the Ninth | Allison Shoemaker
This House | Edward Mc Whinney

Contradiction | from the editor


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