Elegy

By Aracelis Girmay Aracelis Girmay

What to do with this knowledge
that our living is not guaranteed?

Perhaps one day you touch the young branch
of something beautiful. & it grows & grows
despite your birthdays & the death certificate,
& it one day shades the heads of something beautiful
or makes itself useful to the nest. Walk out
of your house, then, believing in this.
Nothing else matters.

All above us is the touching
of strangers & parrots,
some of them human,
some of them not human.

Listen to me. I am telling you
a true thing. This is the only kingdom.
The kingdom of touching;
the touches of the disappearing, things.

Aracelis Girmay, "Elegy" from Kingdom Animalia. Copyright © 2011 by Aracelis Girmay.  Reprinted by permission of BOA Editions, Ltd.  www.boaeditions.org

Source: Kingdom Animalia (BOA Editions, Ltd., 2011)

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Poet Aracelis Girmay

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Subjects Living, Growing Old, The Body, Time & Brevity

 Aracelis  Girmay

Biography

Born and raised in Santa Ana, California, poet Aracelis Girmay earned a BA at Connecticut College and an MFA from New York University. Her poems trace the connections of transformation and loss across cities and bodies.
 
In her 2011 online chat interview with the Rumpus Poetry Book Club, Girmay discussed innovative and hybrid poetric forms, stating, “I wonder what new explorations of form might have to do with documenting the . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Growing Old, The Body, Time & Brevity

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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