Apartment

By Rae Armantrout b. 1947 Rae Armantrout
1

The woman on the mantel,
who doesn't much resemble me,
is holding a chainsaw
away from her body,
with a shocked smile,
while an undiscovered tumor
squats on her kidney.

2

The present
is a sentimental favorite,
with its heady mix
of grandiosity
and abjection,
truncated,
framed.

3

It's as if I'm subletting
a friend's apartment.
Even in the dream,
I'm trying to imagine   
which friend.

And I'm trying to get
all my robes together,
robes I really own and
robes I don't

Source: Poetry (June 2008).

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This poem originally appeared in the June 2008 issue of Poetry magazine

June 2008
 Rae  Armantrout

Biography

Rae Armantrout, one of the founding members of the West Coast group of Language poets, stands apart from other Language poets in her lyrical voice and her commitment to the interior and the domestic. Her short-lined poems are often concerned with dismantling conventions of memory, pop culture, science, and mothering, and these unsparing interrogations are often streaked with wit. “You can hold the various elements of my poems in . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Health & Illness, Time & Brevity

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

SCHOOL / PERIOD Language Poetry

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