Tell me again about the uses of anger,
about the ways in which we’ve decided
to refuse to feed the best, softest parts
of ourselves to the animal with many heads
guarding the gates, the dark shape hunched
at the center of its lair— What is the price
for rising above the weeds, for coming
out from behind the ruins to show
our faces, be fully visible in the light?
Once, we used to cower before the beast.
Once, like owls and other creatures
we masked our movements with night.
But then the moon showed us other ways
through the labyrinth; it said: Take
the red pulse at your wrist and don’t
lose it. Let no one ever take it away.
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.