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Best Famous Laure-Anne Bosselaar Poems

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by Laure-Anne Bosselaar | |

English Flavors

  I love to lick English the way I licked the hard 
round licorice sticks the Belgian nuns gave me for six
good conduct points on Sundays after mass.
Love it when ‘plethora’, ‘indolence’, ‘damask’, or my new word: ‘lasciviousness,’ stain my tongue, thicken my saliva, sweet as those sticks — black and slick with every lick it took to make daggers out of them: sticky spikes I brandished straight up to the ebony crucifix in the dorm, with the pride of a child more often punished than praised.
‘Amuck,’ ‘awkward,’ or ‘knuckles,’ have jaw- breaker flavors; there’s honey in ‘hunter’s moon,’ hot pepper in ‘hunk,’ and ‘mellifluous’ has aromas of almonds and milk .
Those tastes of recompense still bitter-sweet today as I roll, bend and shape English in my mouth, repeating its syllables like acts of contrition, then sticking out my new tongue — flavored and sharp — to the ambiguities of meaning.


by Laure-Anne Bosselaar | |

Community Garden

  I watch the man bend over his patch,   
a fat gunny sack at his feet.
He combs the earth with his fingers, picks up pebbles around tiny heads of sorrel.
Clouds bruise in, clog the sky, the first fat drops pock-mark the dust.
The man wipes his hands on his chest, opens the sack, pulls out top halves of broken bottles, and plants them, firmly, over each head of sorrel — tilting the necks toward the rain.
His back is drenched, so am I, his careful gestures clench my throat, wrench a hunger out of me I don't understand, can't turn away from.
The last plant sheltered, the man straightens his back, swings the sack over his shouler, looks at the sky, then at me and — as if to end a conversation — says: I know they'd survive without the bottles, I know.
He leaves the garden, plods downhill, blurs away.
I hear myself say it to no one: I never had a father.


by Laure-Anne Bosselaar | |

GARAGE SALE

  I sold her bed for a song.
A song of yearning like an orphan’s.
Or the one knives carve into bread.
But the un-broken bread song too.
For the song that rivers sing to the ferryman’s oars.
With that dread in it.
For a threadbare tune: garroted, chest-choked, cheap.
A sparrow’s, beggar’s, a foghorn’s call.
For the kind of song only morning can slap on love-stained sheets — that’s what I sold my mother’s bed for.
The one she died in.
Sold it for a song.