The poem I was going to write was smaller than this.
First it grew to the size of the room
until its flanks nudged the walls.
And then to the size of a house.
Walking through it was like
being inside a soap bubble in a dream,
the outside distorted and wavering.
And now we are all living in it—
our weather, our element.
There is nothing left to tell except
that this is what it is like
to live inside a poem—
the slanting light before dusk, and grief
brushing your cheek like a wing.
Nan Cohen is the author of two books of poetry, Rope Bridge and Unfinished City. The recipient of a Stegner Fellowship, a Rona Jaffe Writer’s Award, and an NEA Literature Fellowship, she lives in Los Angeles and codirects the poetry programs of the Napa Valley Writers’ Conference.
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