You Can't Buy Shoes in a Painting

By Jill Osier b. 1974 Jill Osier
You can't even buy a soda. You can only
see these things, see a mother steer
her son to the car, his head cocked
licking his ice cream.

Earlier, driving, trying to keep   
between two cornfields, I couldn't see myself
into a map, couldn't be anywhere in it,
though I knew all the patient states
between us.

Pigeons sit high on a mill's peaked roof,
spaced even as beads. They can stand that
close to each other, but looking at them
you wouldn't know it. Would you.

Source: Poetry (June 2005).


This poem originally appeared in the June 2005 issue of Poetry magazine

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June 2005
 Jill  Osier


Jill Osier's work has been awarded a Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Diane Middlebrook Poetry Fellowship from the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, and the Campbell Corner Poetry Prize. She is the author of a letterpress chapbook Bedful of Nebraskas. Her poems appear widely.

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Landscapes & Pastorals, Arts & Sciences, Painting & Sculpture, Nature

Poetic Terms Imagery, Free Verse

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