O'Brien County's Bell-Times-Courier -

American Life In Poetry


August 20, 2020

American Life In Poetry

What do we select to keep with us when someone we love has died? Here's Gail Mazur, who lives in Massachusetts, opening her closet door to show us. This poem originally appeared in the journal Ploughshares. Mazur's new and selected poems, Land's End, is due out this year from the University of Chicago Press.

Blue Work Shirt

I go into our bedroom closet

with its one blue work shirt, the cuffs

frayed, the paint stains a loopy non-

narrative of color, of spirit.

Now that you are bodiless

and my body's no longer the body you knew,

it's good to be reminded every morning

of the great mess,...

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