Inscrutable sonnets


Why is it the young are so convinced
we want to hold them back, keep them
from what they think they want the most
to do? In my time I was no different—

Little hot-head, little handful of matches
kept discreetly under the hood. Salt, saltpeter;
kegs of combustibles. Mistress of the discreet
ruse, the decorous alibi, tortured by sighs.

A field in love with the sea, a ship with land:
When finally you get to cross the threshold
and look back from the murky forest of middle
age, you laugh. How was it possible not to see?

With its window dressing, desire makes everything
under the sun look shiny, new again: original.


In response to Via Negativa: Conflicts of interest.

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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