Inscrutable Sonnets


Like an idol that will not be approached,
you sit in your house crammed with the flotsam
of years: melamine plates sharing space with old
dictionaries and law journals, umbrellas hung
on the bannister like pennants for the next
festival of rain. In the corner, the sewing
machine is an island overgrown with a vegetation
of cardboard boxes and plastic hangers. The upright
piano looms like a derelict volcano under a flannel
throw. When someone pries its ancient lid open, the notes
make sounds of discolored ivory. Do the bean curd vendors
ever knock at the gate anymore? What do the neighbors think
when they see you shuffle out to the driveway bristling
with your arsenal of keys, gnarled hands on your hips?

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 (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, knits, hand-binds books, and listens to tango music.

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