The National Poetry Review

Andrew Szilvasy


Like rust I chew on steel, treat my liver as though it molted, bash
my body against itself and all creation as if it were a child’s
favorite toy. Some things are more perfect in decay and boy,
the world and I are holding hands and watching pieces of us peel
and fall toward great black ice that’s welling up and mounting
the heads of stars on invisible walls. I feel ashamed, though,

how much I love this place, how every morning I’m surprised—
divined—to be, to drink hot bitter coffee, and to watch a jay
and know that it has broken eggs and eaten nestlings
from that finest and most beloved of baskets, woven from grass
and twigs and flowers and dung, that I’d plop the earth in
and roost upon. Or maybe, wear as a crown—as my conscience.

ANDREW SZILVASY is the author of the chapbook Witness Marks, and has poems appearing or forthcoming in CutBank, Smartish Pace, Barrow Street, Tar River Poetry, The Moth, and RHINO, among others. He lives in Boston with his wife.

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