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Copia (American Poets Continuum Series) by Erika Meitner

By Erika Meitner

"The poems in Copia are approximately what's and what's almost-gone, what's in limbo and what won't cave in, what's nearly at all-time low yet nonetheless and consistently brimming with the potential of miracle."—Rachel Zucker

Erika Meitner's fourth e-book takes cues from the Land Artists of the Nineteen Sixties who created paintings in keeping with landscapes of city peripheries and constructions in quite a few states of disintegration. the gathering additionally features a component to documentary poems approximately Detroit that have been commissioned for Virginia Quarterly Review.

Because it really is an uninhabited position, simply because it
makes me hole, I pried open the pages of
Detroit: the homes blanked out, factories
absorbed again into ghetto fingers and scrub-
oak, piles of tires, tons of cement block.
Vines knock and input via shattered
drop-ceilings, glassless home windows. Ragwort
cracks the street's asphalt to unsolvable

Meitner additionally probes the hulking ruins of workplace structures, tract housing, superstores, building websites, and freeways, and doesn't shy from the interactions that happen in Walmart and grocery store parking lots.

It is sort of Halloween, which means
wrong sizes on Wal-Mart racks, style baggage of
pumpkins extinguishing themselves at the stoop

children from the trailer park trawling our exact lawns soon
so we will supply away nickels, mild, sandpaper, raisins, cement.

Erika Meitner used to be a 2009 nationwide Poetry sequence winner. Her paintings has seemed in American Poetry evaluation, Ploughshares, Tin condominium, the simplest American Poetry 2011, Kenyon assessment, and in other places. She is affiliate professor of English at Virginia Tech.

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Extra resources for Copia (American Poets Continuum Series)

Example text

Surfaced with asphalt. The iron gate to the entrance where the cemetery once stood. , reminds me we’re taking the new way since the road is broken. Orange yield sign, orange cone, exhumed coffin of the soon-to-be playground, the promised pool; heaps of gravel grow and vanish in minutes, and O the brick piles, the retaining walls that fit (dip-click) into each other. I will crochet my son an afghan of a dump truck, of a backhoe, of a crane 53 like the one we stopped to watch this week outside school raising large metal pipes high above the stadium.

Don’t rush. The month of May has arrived. Now the rain is harder. The house tears at its seams, vinyl-siding stretching to accommodate air, water, elemental gravities that seep in while we sleep. The wind does not howl. It surgically disassembles each set of metal chimes we hang from the porch eaves. It nods the tall grass then tramples it like a pack of roving dogs. Our small son learned to open doors on his own some time ago. When the rains stop. When the rains never stop. Somewhere a boy has a pistol blazing a hole in his pocket the size of the moon.

My son loves to curl his hands into half moons and press them together as a bowl, flatten them to a book. I’ve been reading the sefer zikoren, the yizker-bikher that recount how survivors like my grandmother searched their hometowns in vain after the war for familiar bones to bury, and then for their peacetime dead, only to find the streets paved with Hebrew inscriptions, gravestones face-up. Avenging ghosts. Maybe you’re already there, grandmother, bulldozer. Rendered. Surfaced with asphalt. The iron gate to the entrance where the cemetery once stood.

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