but is tired of leaving no trace of its origins. The land itself has changed; and the skies are always missing a body that vapors into nothing. But water is always this blue haze in the mind. Or a limpid thing with none of the brittle edges of glass. Or a glossy brown sheet over which a ferry is crossing. Water wants to touch the face looking over the handrail, bored by the sun, tired of its own loneliness and need. The loneliness of water is also like that: empty theatre filled with echoes of other voices, making it seem unoriginal. Water wants to throw itself into an opening and understand slaked or flooded or filled. But the metaphysic of moments is a privilege claimed by stable bodies. Water is not— at the same time is more than— two drops fixed by gold wire and dangling from the earlobe. Put it to bed in a box flocked with velvet. Carry it cupped in both hands as you walk through a field that feels larger than any sense of yourself that you know. But still tenderly.
Poet Luisa A. Igloria (website) is Co-Winner of the 2019 Crab Orchard Open Competition in Poetry for Maps for Migrants and Ghosts (Southern Illinois University Press, September 2020). She was appointed Poet Laureate of the Commonwealth of Virginia for 2020-22, and in 2021 received 1 of 23 Poet Laureate Fellowships from the Academy of American Poets and the Mellon Foundation. She 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 former US Poet Laureate 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; she also teaches classes at The Muse Writers’ Center in Norfolk. 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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