I first read some of Chase Twichell's poems in The Bloodaxe Staying Alive and/or Being Alive anthologies. She's an American poet and I really like her voice. Her poems have appeared in literary journals and magazines including The New Yorker, Field, Ploughshares, The Georgia Review, The Paris Review, Poetry, The Nation, and The Yale Review. I love Hunger for Something
Sometimes I long to be in the woodpile,
cut-apart trees soon to be smoke,
or even the smoke itself,
sinewy ghost of ash and air, going
wherever I want to, at least for a while.
Neither inside nor out,
neither lost nor home, no longer
a shape or a name, I’d pass through
all the broken windows of the world.
It’s not a wish for consciousness to end.
It’s not the appetite an army has
for its own emptying heart,
but a hunger to stand now and then
alone on the death-grounds,
where the dogs of the self are feeding.
"the dogs of the self", what a great description. I found some more of her poems online.
I’ve never seen a soul detached from its gender,
but I’d like to. I’d like to see my own that way,
free of its female tethers. Maybe it would be like
riding a horse. The rider’s the human one,
but everyone looks at the horse.
To the Reader: If You Asked Me
I want you with me, and yet you are the end
of my privacy. Do you see how these rooms
have become public? How we glance to see if--
who? Who did you imagine?
Surely we're not here alone, you and I.
I've been wandering
where the cold tracks of language
collapse into cinders, unburnable trash.
Beyond that, all I can see is the remote cold
of meteors before their avalanches of farewell.
If you asked me what words
a voice like this one says in parting,
I'd say, I'm sweeping an empty factory
toward which I feel neither hostility nor nostalgia.
I'm just a broom, sweeping.
To the Reader: Twilight
Whenever I look
out at the snowy
mountains at this hour
and speak directly
into the ear of the sky,
it's you I'm thinking of.
You're like the spirits
the children invent
to inhabit the stuffed horse
and the doll.
I don't know who hears me.
I don't know who speaks
when the horse speaks.