Oh man oh man oh man. The new U.S. poet laureate is younger than me. Trying hard not to freak out here. Deep breath – SMILE – Readers, the Library of Congress just named Tracy K. Smith ("Try this, mack") the new poet laureate. She shares with MV favorite Paul Muldoon a faculty position at Princeton, and she reportedly takes personal themes, love, family, a search for big pictures (her dad was an astronaut), a search for god, as guides for her poetry. I hope we’ll all be able to see/hear her in public forums in the coming year. -ed.
I DON’T MISS IT
But sometimes I forget where I am,
Imagine myself inside that life again.
Recalcitrant mornings. Sun perhaps,
Or more likely colorless light
Filtering its way through shapeless cloud.
And when I begin to believe I haven’t left,
The rest comes back. Our couch. My smoke
Climbing the walls while the hours fall.
Straining against the noise of traffic, music,
Anything alive, to catch your key in the door.
And that scamper of feeling in my chest,
As if the day, the night, wherever it is
I am by then, has been only a whir
Of something other than waiting.
We hear so much about what love feels like.
Right now, today, with the rain outside,
And leaves that want as much as I do to believe
In May, in seasons that come when called,
It’s impossible not to want
To walk into the next room and let you
Run your hands down the sides of my legs,
Knowing perfectly well what they know.