Poem by Gail Wronsky
And the owl on the rooftop watching the sun go down
The day came down to nothing and of the nothing
there is very little left. Too whit too whoo.
The vocalized sound haunted by meaning as if by an
incurable illness. Face like white frost, expressionless
so that the dead have nothing to go by. No
rainbows stooping over for a drink. No ravens crying
thickly “rain, rain.” Night is the ink-play of God the
literati-artist. And it is
an apt maneuver, as false as it is true. The
masked and the exposed? I see them both coming.
Strange horns and motorcycle engines? Too whit
too whoo. Sun, you’re wearing feathers like a lady bright.
Gap craving night. Wide enough to decline through.
Gail Wronsky is the author, coauthor, or translator of twelve books of poetry and prose, among them Dying for Beauty (Copper Canyon Press), Poems for Infidels (Red Hen Press), and So Quick Bright Things (What Books Press). Her translation of Alicia Partnoy’s book Fuegos Florales (Flowering Fires) recently won the American Book Prize from Settlement House Press. She teaches creative writing and women’s literature at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.