Ignatz Invoked

By Monica Youn Monica Youn
A gauze bandage wraps the land
and is unwound, stained orange with sulfates.

A series of slaps molds a mountain,
a fear uncoils itself, testing its long

cool limbs. A passing cloud
seizes up like a carburetor

and falls to earth, lies broken-
backed and lidless in the scree.

Acetylene torches now snug
in their holsters, shop-vacs

trundled back behind the dawn.
A mist becomes a murmur, becomes

a moan deepening the dust-
choked fissures in the rock O pity us

Ignatz O come to us by moonlight
O arch your speckled body over the earth.

Monica Youn, “Ignatz Invoked” from Ignatz. Copyright © 2010 by Monica Youn. Reprinted by permission of Four Way Books.

Source: Ignatz (Four Way Books, 2010)

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Poet Monica Youn

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Subjects Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Arts & Sciences, Reading & Books, Social Commentaries, Cities & Urban Life

Poetic Terms Free Verse

Biography

Monica Youn is the author of Barter (Graywolf Press, 2003) and Ignatz (Four Way Books, 2010), which was a finalist for the National Book Award. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including the New Yorker, the Paris Review, and the New York Times Magazine, and she has been awarded fellowships from the Library of Congress and Stanford University, among other awards. A former lawyer, she now teaches . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Arts & Sciences, Reading & Books, Social Commentaries, Cities & Urban Life

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Poetic Terms Free Verse

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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