(Spring 2014)
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Larry Levis

Threshold of the Oblivious Blossoming

Carol Potter
The Good Pig
Rebecca Dunham
Tableaux Vivants
The Wedding at Cana
Eric Pankey
Speculation on Cause and Effect
Mary Lou Buschi
Mary Ann Samyn
Now We Are Allowed
May I Sit?
That Morning's Doe
Eric McHenry
You're Back
Heather Sellers

Every Girl Is an Experimental Girl

Kenny Williams
Palace of Illusion
William Aarnes

The Commissioner of Dread

Darlene Pagan
The Day an Officer Shows Up Who Looks Exactly Like the Actor Gary Oldman
Jon Loomis
Poem to Fold Into a Paper Boat
When I Die
The Past
Nicole Walker
Lilac Horses
Rufo Quintavalle
Shelf 40
Dennis Schmitz
Learning to Swim in the Public Pool
The Last Judgment
Philip Metres
For Emily Henochowicz, After the Tear Gas Canister
Betsy Sholl
Imago Dei
Gerald Stern
After the Church Reading Against the War
Ray Amorosi
Broken Promises
Maya Catherine Popa
The Seer Dreams Helen
Karl Krolow
translated by
Stuart Friebert
Everyday Poem
Anna Journey
I Have a Problem with the Erotic History of Musk
Mark Wagenaar
Appalachian Farewell
Midwest Blues Leave Me Shining
Angela Ball
The Woman Who Works in the Medical Supply Store Is Strange. So Is a Detective.
Unformed Personality Disorder (UPD)
Robert Lunday
Feeding the Horses
One to St. Ives
Kevin Prufer
Our Democratic Nation
Trying to Forget About You


Poetry 2013: Six Review-Essays

David Walker
Angels in America (Mary Szybist, Incarnadine)
Martha Collins
Fact and Form, Blood and Love (A. Van Jordan, The Cineaste; Shane McCrae, Blood)
Kazim Ali
God Is No Security Blanket (Mark Wunderlich, The Earth Avails)
Mary Ann Samyn
"Here Is a Happiness" (Donald Revell, Tantivy)
Pamela Alexander
Holy Songs Presented on Chipped Plates (Jennifer Atkinson, Canticle of the Night Path)
David Young
"I Simply Came Back to Work" (Pablo Neruda, All the Odes)




In Sun Bank lobby the palest girl knits
a heavy blue thing. You could say nature is winning.

She knows seven palms and seven people
in the city where an alligator is a grocery cart.

Coming back, she'd wanted lichen in her lobby, expected green
snakes, vines. Not swarms of black plastic cords connected to her lost-left world.

For a girl, a vine is a telephone line. Not a noose, not a monster, not a lasso.
Any girl will still grow in darkness. 

This evening a squirrel swings like swag in the jaws of a bobcat
behind See Saw Junction. (Could a girl be dead in a mouth and be okay?)
She never made a war, a complete sock, a sound, a daughter, a box,
a belonging. She misses herself then. She misses herself now.

Translucent buttons in the school desk drawer in the basement. The pewter pitcher
from her mother. The clippers! Every night, another thing she forgot, cannot forget.

There weren't hopes or cranes or lenders here, not back then. There were parents.
She's come from far away but not far away enough. Remember

a girl becoming a red bicycle (she flew red) followed her father—
he knew—down the concrete water by the bay?

—Heather Sellers

Copyright © 2014 by Oberlin College. May not be reproduced without permission.


Because we're not supposed to write about the weather,
even though it won't stop raining since we broke everything

and the porch grows viridian moss, and the backyard ferns
could fatten a dinosaur, nodding its plated head

beside the swingset. Forget about love—never mind
your wife who is forty and dark eyed, who keeps your secrets

and drinks with you sometimes, who still after ten years
and two children sighs when you bite, gently, her earlobe. 

Nobody cares. Everyone's five-year-old breathes
by the bed at night, everyone's walls are haunted by bats, 

everyone's world is ending—can't you please just shut up
for a minute? Can't you please just give it a rest?

But no—there you are again on the riverbank. 
Fat moon in the clouds. Little flotilla bobbing downstream.

—Jon Loomis

Copyright © 2014 by Oberlin College. May not be reproduced without permission.



            to our son John

You died, a few days old, in an isolette,
but all your supposed childhood, I take you

out & concentrate until you flicker
briefly in specifics. I take you out

cold-water days, acid-rock radio or
country music drained away by wind,

& coax you, your body only imagined
blue & pimply as fresh stucco,

coax you into congruence with water.
Unable to absorb the art by absorbing

the medium itself (the first lesson),
you choke on the water & go down

until your eyes rub darkness,
your ears fill, bubbles thread up

out of every body-opening that squints
to hold you. After a while, your eyes

won’t close on the grainy overhead
sunlight through which adult legs kick,

through which their careless hands
slash. Up here, we have 5 PM's caramelized

light. Up here, dry & clothed, we argue
dinner. Up here, other kids queue

along the pool's nicked edge, all profile
like figures in an Egyptian frieze.

Pushing between them, your mother
kneels, wets her lips to whisper down

into the water that Putin will free
the dissidents. Up here, I promise

hot-dogs. Up here, the tired lifeguard's
hiccups thin to breathing. The hardest

lesson is to want to come up again.

—Dennis Schmitz

Copyright © 2014 by Oberlin College. May not be reproduced without permission.

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