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The Self Forgives Little of Itself

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The days swell with our remaining.

Yes, the leaves allow the wind to contain

the branch of a tree and the skyline
to become its own type of lineation,

the idea of beauty lost and then found along

the swirling liquid in the trashcans
left in the alley.

Watching the train cut across the prairie,

geese flying the wrong way
for the season,

it’s as if the knuckle of tomorrow
has arrived today

with the weight of snow and wind,
gardens cut open to sky

and the sky alive with the orange hue

of the sun replaced
by a false sense of itself,

a waste of time left clear
and open in this wash of sightline.

G

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Author Image

Adam Clay is the author of A Hotel Lobby at the Edge of the World (Milkweed Editions, 2012) and The Wash (Parlor Press, 2006). A third book of poems, Stranger, is forthcoming from Milkweed Editions in 2016. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Ploughshares, Poetry Daily, Crab Orchard Review, Boston Review, Denver Quarterly, The Kenyon Review Online, Black Warrior Review, Iowa Review, The Pinch, and elsewhere. He co-edits TYPO Magazine and teaches at the University of Illinois Springfield.

Feature image by Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Untitled (“Motion-Sound” Landscape), 1969/1974.

Click on the image to enlarge.

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