December 2006

Anne Marie Macari


Tony Barnstone
  "A Manifesto on the Contemporary Sonnet: A Personal Aesthetics"
Tony Barnstone considers the sonnet from its formal beginnings to its evolution into the twenty-first century, including some generative techniques for sonnets of your own

Tony Barnstone

Willis Barnstone
Lorna Knowles Blake
Kim Bridgford
Billy Collins
Leisha Douglas
Barry Ergang
Ross A. Gay
Soheila Ghaussy This marks an author's first online publication
Miranda Girard This marks an author's first online publication
Myrna Goodman This marks an author's first online publication
Susan Gubernat
Heidi Hart
Jay Leeming This marks an author's first online publication
Anne Marie Macari

Patricia O'Hara
John Poch
Michael Salcman
Patricia Smith
A.E. Stallings

Gerald Stern
Joyce Sutphen
Jeet Thayil
Meredith Trede This marks an author's first online publication


Anne Marie Macari's Gloryland (Alice James Books, 2005) followed Ivory Cradle, which won the APR/Honickman first book prize in 2000. A teacher in New England College's Low-Residency M.F.A. Program in Poetry, she has been published in many magazines and journals, including The American Poetry Review, The Iowa Review, and Five Points.

From "Their Eyes Were Opened"    Click to hear in real audio

III     (And the Birds Too Pecked the Flesh)

And the birds too pecked the flesh of the fruit.
And their eyes were opened. And they would not

go near the man and woman. And ants ate
the fruit. And deer. And the seeds of the fruit

passed through them and dropped a new knowledge over
the garden. And the garden was transformed,

digested, shat out, growing again and eaten
again. The small world made greater. And the tree

died and was remade and drifted like spores
of mold, like mud on the back of the dog, like dust

itself. And all life fled the man and woman.
Scurrying, disappearing into the ground, the feet

and mouths, clawing, digging, chewing—and fruit
like rotting eyes dropping from the trees.

IV     (If You Are an Angel)

If you are an angel, I am the wind.
If you are a shepherd, I am a wolf.

If you a bomb, I the emptiness inside.
If you are a rope, I'll descend your rough

fibers, I'll climb down into my own bones
where you are afraid to enter. Though they

open the book of my body: cranium,
breasts, the catacombs of lungs, scroll of the tongue,

pearl ovaries—you cannot read it.
However much you scream, whatever fire,

I will be beyond you, and earth is
beyond you, and the first and the last,

beyond you, and beyond you, I swear it,
even beyond you, there is other.

V     (Where We Lived Then, Circle)

Where we lived then, circle, arc of tenderness,
a place we could keep moving but never

get lost, all that time you didn't hear me,
or was it the other way around? Maybe

my sky was an eggshell, my god a great bird,
my home a nest of spit. Ending where I

began. It's just another failure, like
the spider's eggs wrapped in silk, blown into

the mud. Like obedience, its red slash
of loss. Lately, when I'm sleeping, an animal

wakes inside me, volcanic at the base
of my throat. Long-limbed, cramped by my ribs.

Deep groans, a song inside a song. Changes
are coming, my lambs, start your roaring.

VI     (Something Long Forgotten)

Something long forgotten comes into her.
Some days she thinks the afterbirth still drags

behind her, her breasts hard with milk. She clears
a place, setting stones for a garden. Now

all that was buried comes back. Earth bursting
with memory. And each flower drawing her face

inside its face. The legs of spring scissored
open. And the heaving. When it gets so bad

she wants to die, she tries to remember.
To get past the nostalgia for submission,

past surrender, law, altar, the rape
of the divine. Spring scissors inside her.

The marching, the soldiers, children with guns,
something long forgotten comes into her.



Anne Marie Macari: Poetry
Copyright ©2006 The Cortland Review December 2006 FeatureThe Cortland Review