A Hundred Bolts of Satin

By Kay Ryan b. 1945 Kay Ryan
All you
have to lose
is one
connection
and the mind   
uncouples
all the way back.   
It seems
to have been
a train.
There seems
to have been
a track.
The things
that you
unpack
from the
abandoned cars   
cannot sustain   
life: a crate of   
tractor axles,   
for example,
a dozen dozen   
clasp knives,   
a hundred   
bolts of satin—
perhaps you   
specialized   
more than   
you imagined.

Kay Ryan, “A Hundred Bolts of Satin” from Say Uncle. Copyright © 2000 by Kay Ryan. Reprinted with the permission of Grove/Atlantic, Inc.

Source: A Hundred Bolts of Satin (2000)

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Poet Kay Ryan b. 1945

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

 Kay  Ryan

Biography

Born in California in 1945 and acknowledged as one of the most original voices in the contemporary landscape, Kay Ryan is the author of several books of poetry, including Flamingo Watching (2006), The Niagara River (2005), and Say Uncle (2000). Her book The Best of It: New and Selected Poems (2010) won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. Ryan's tightly compressed, rhythmically dense poetry is often compared to that of Emily . . .

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POET’S REGION U.S., Western

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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