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Funding the Arts and Sciences

Don’t be a baby

about the bugs behind the leaves

Oh no I am thinking about the bugs behind the leaves

at the same time that I am looking at the bugs

behind the leaves and I am even thinking

about looking at the bugs behind the leaves

Surely I shall perish!

That is your problem, child

Baby it’s not a real problem

not like my problem of wilting desire

and I am the fucking sun

Your problem is like you find a dent in your can

My problem is like an electric can opener

It turns on and it buzzes forever

in the expensive space station

No one can go home


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a cricket in a bucket

full of milk and a cricket

thought no from his legs

to his two antennae

and the no reached one

of them first and later

the other one died

the milk was goat

milk from the goat

standing over the bucket

and the bucket was yellow

the cricket was green

you had gone out

to the bank and you

did not see it

it the bucket or it

the cricket and no one

else saw it all either

at the bank you licked

the envelope and it

liked it I know because

the envelope was me

sort of moreover

I was your pink tongue



The sea nips at us from a great distance

like a postcard from someone

who calls himself your uncle

and meanwhile think of all the time I’ve wasted

rhyming vacuum with perfume

in search of a new feeling.

This is an unremarked morning

bleeding out on the golden green field.

Everything will eventually reach us

and it is this fact that makes us so tired.

It won’t free us from slogging through time.

If there were a god, it would be a disappointed mother:

They don’t like it, my old-fashioned hours.

What a sensitive god we’ve developed!

(On this gingerly tingling land.)


Photo: Dennie Eagleson

Heather Christle is the author of four poetry collections, most recently Heliopause (Wesleyan University Press). Other poems can be found in new or upcoming issues of The Believer, London Review of Books, Narrative, and The New Yorker. She lives in Ohio, where she is writing a book of prose about crying.

Photo: Dennie Eagleson

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