In a landscape of having to repeat

By Martha Ronk b. 1940 Martha Ronk
In a landscape of having to repeat.
Noticing that she does, that he does and so on.
The underlying cause is as absent as rain.
Yet one remembers rain even in its absence and an attendant quiet.   
If illusion descends or the very word you’ve been looking for.
He remembers looking at the photograph,
green and gray squares, undefined.
How perfectly ordinary someone says looking at the same thing or   
I’d like to get to the bottom of that one.
When it is raining it is raining for all time and then it isn’t
and when she looked at him, as he remembers it, the landscape moved closer   
than ever and she did and now he can hardly remember what it was like.

Martha Ronk, “In a landscape of having to repeat” from In a Landscape of Having to Repeat. Copyright © 2004 by Martha Ronk. Reprinted with the permission of Omnidawn.

Source: In a Landscape of Having to Repeat (Omnidawn Publishing, 2004)

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Poet Martha Ronk b. 1940


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 Martha  Ronk


Poet, fiction writer, and editor Martha Ronk was born in Cleveland and earned a BA at Wellesley College and a PhD at Yale University.
With wry humor and formal curiosity, Ronk tests the limits of syntax and literary convention in her work. The author of numerous collections of poetry, including

Transfer of Qualities (2013), a National Book Award long-list selection; Partially Kept (2012); Vertigo (2007), chosen by C.D. Wright . . .

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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