This entry is part 1 of 47 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Summer 2012


“The spleen is 1″ by 3″ by 5″, weighs approximately 7 oz, and lies between the 9th and 11th ribs on the left hand side.” ~ Wikipedia


“Falsely, the mortal part we blame
Or our depressed, and pond’rous frame…”
~ Anne Finch, Countess of Winchilsea, “The Spleen” (1709)


Should I hollow out one more secret
space beneath the swarm of organs

pumping out their rhythms, should I
carve a door under the floating disks

of threaded bone that ladder up
the spine— What if I should find,

after all, that the liver’s field
of indigo blooms with asterisks

on the machine? And what if the spleen’s
lopsided house is sown with husks

that tumbled, crumbling from the eaves
above? And what if the kidneys

spread their wings like butterflies
and wrote a silver question mark?

Fireflies glint like signals along a street
lined with magnolias— dusky but for their

faint edge of white, their creamy perfumes
heavy in the heat of this first summer night.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

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Poet Luisa A. Igloria (Poetry Foundation web page, author webpage ) is the winner of the 2015 Resurgence Prize (UK), the world’s first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. She is the author of What Is Left of Wings, I Ask (forthcoming, 2018 Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Chapbook Prize, selected by Natasha Trethewey); Bright as Mirrors Left in the Grass (Kudzu House Press eChapbook selection for Spring 2015), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (Utah State University Press, 2014 May Swenson Prize), Night Willow (Phoenicia Publishing, 2014), The Saints of Streets (University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, 2013), Juan Luna’s Revolver (2009 Ernest Sandeen Prize, University of Notre Dame Press), and nine other books. She is a member of the core faculty of the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University which she directed from 2009-2015. In 2018, she was the inaugural Glasgow Distinguished Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University. When she isn’t writing, reading, or teaching, she cooks with her family, hand-binds books, and listens to tango music.

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