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In Absence—This Unknowing [by Bianca Stone]

Bianca Stone
When you leave, faceless
old lover, element
that I have tried for so long
to explain—I will be
suspended between
two large stones
for a moment
thinking you were good
before I am revived.
I will be laundry
that has gotten loose
from the line. Pantyhose
flying into traffic.
So long, handsome.
When you go, I will be
the moth, the butterfly,
turned to broth in the cocoon.
Reassembled, I will climb out
and you will be subsumed
into a majesty of vapor
gone as an orchid.
I plan it, little switchblade.
I will it, strand of sweet spittle,
endearing idiot I made
out of mud and loss—
you, whose shelf life is zero,
you, who keep me from totality
and the small sum of what
is otherwise infinite.

from Brooklyn Rail

November 30, 2022

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August 31, 2022

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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman

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