Were I to Wring a Rag

By Todd Boss Todd Boss
—no matter how much   
muscle I might have   
mustered—my mother   
was like to come along   
behind, reach around   
me to take it up again   
from where I’d left it,   
lift it back into my line   
of vision and in one   
practiced motion from   
that strangle in her bare   
hands and thin air work   
a second miraculous   
stream of silver dishwash   
into the day’s last gleam . . .

Source: Poetry (December 2008).


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

December 2008
 Todd  Boss


Poet Todd Boss grew up on a cattle farm in Wisconsin, and was educated at St. Olaf College and the University of Alaska Anchorage, where he received an MFA. Boss’s pared-down, idea-driven poems are propelled by internal rhyme and balance clarity with a nuanced attention to sound. “I think of poems as pieces of music, or a work of architecture,” he told the Utne Reader in 2009. “The poem is a space that you’re inviting someone . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Youth, Parenthood, Relationships, Home Life, Family & Ancestors

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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