To sing in the presence of quaking
is to summon the cosmic being. I have
been trying to walk theistical paths
with tactical feet like a row of ghost deer.
I am just beginning to grok that the bunch
of white male slave owners, then in
their twenties, were pretty much lame-ass
system designers. So, if you’re sensing
an edginess, lady, the lap of the world
is a map of the unmet needs of men’s pain.
And money—the miscreant word for I need
some warmth to protect me. My old honey
locust to rock me. A smooth lunular amulet.
That place within us which isn’t yet gouged.
Diane Raptosh teaches creative writing and co-directs the program in Criminal Justice/Prison Studies at the College of Idaho. Her eighth book, Hand Signs from Eternity’s Yurt, was published by Kelsay Books in June 2022. Her collection American Amnesiac (Etruscan Press) was long-listed for the 2013 National Book Award in poetry. The recipient of three fellowships in literature from the Idaho Commission on the Arts, she served as Boise Poet Laureate (2013) and Idaho Writer-in-Residence (2013–2016). In 2018 she won the Idaho Governor’s Arts Award in Excellence.
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