We were Two Rooms of One Timber, But I Left that Place Alone

By Camille T. Dungy

Sara, widow, 31

Henry pulled our heartwood along the rutted street   
that town stood beside, built two rooms   
and called them home.   My Henry did that.   
There.   And I lived all those days inside his love.   

But there is a kind of hunger that feeds   
on flesh.   Only, let it be yearning, heaving,   
rising flesh.   Only, let it be flesh living   
and loving.   Alive.   Let it be life.   

There is a kind of hunger that feeds on life.   
They carved into him with banquet knives,   
made stew of his skin and stirred it   
with his own bones.   My Henry served: the meat   
and the pot to cook it in.   And there was no charge   
against the men who made that meal.

Camille Dungy, "We are two rooms of one timber, but I left that place alone" from What to Eat, What to Drink, What to Leave for Poison. Copyright 2006 Camille Dungy. Reprinted by permission of Red Hen Press.

Source: What to Eat What to Drink What to Leave for Poison (Red Hen Press, 2006)

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Poet Camille T. Dungy


Subjects Relationships, Crime & Punishment, Love, Social Commentaries, Men & Women, Heartache & Loss

 Camille T. Dungy


Poet and editor Camille T. Dungy was born in Denver but moved often as her father, an academic physician, taught at many different medical schools across the country. She earned a BA from Stanford University and an MFA from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro.
Dungy’s full-length poetry publications include Smith Blue (2011), a finalist for the William Carlos Williams Award from the Poetry Society of America; Suck on . . .

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SUBJECT Relationships, Crime & Punishment, Love, Social Commentaries, Men & Women, Heartache & Loss


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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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