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WAITING – Kwame Dawes

on October 25 | in Poetry | by | with No Comments

In the presence of heat, the air
palpable as breath, in there
 
the heart races, the thing is
waiting, a kind of skin trembling
 
waiting for something to come
on me, a thing that has no name.
 
When I think of the church
I cannot think of walls, I think
 
of the smell of wine, the sweet
intoxication of it, the thing
 
we sip as if somehow it will
reach deep into the stomach
 
and heal things, clear things,
my head wet with the idea
 
that I cannot walk away
from God, as if anyone can,
 
and how the fear of his de-
parture, his going away, fills
 
me with the despair of a
stone on an open dry field
 
under a dull sun, waiting,
waiting for the return of hope.
 
 
headshot-kwame-dawes-imagesKwame Dawes is the author of twenty books of poetry and numerous other books of fiction, criticism, and essays. He has edited over a dozen anthologies. His most recent collection, City of Bones: A Testament (Northwestern University Press) will appear in 2016 along with Speak from Here to There, a co-written collection of verse with Australian poet John Kinsella, and A Bloom of Stones, a tri-lingual anthology of Haitian Poetry written after the earthquake, which he edited. A Spanish-language collection of his poems, titled Vuelo, will appear in Mexico in 2016. He is Glenna Luschei Editor of Prairie Schooner and teaches at the University of Nebraska and the Pacific MFA Program. He is Director of the African Poetry Book Fund and Artistic Director of the Calabash International Literary Festival.

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