By Ange Mlinko Ange Mlinko
In someone’s distant algorithm   
your mortgage was bundled to another’s   
and stamped a new “security.”   
While it was swapped   
from investor to investor   
accruing fees and interest at each turn,   
your shadow   
and she abandoned her home.   

Someone uses your mortgage   
to leverage   
far inside the starbursts of a server.   
Likewise marriage   
no image—   
What’s a mortgage   
and who’s   
it engage   
on the other side of the firewall?   


I witnessed a will   
which—the language invested with law   
godmothers the peacock’s   
would take care of the baby in the event of a   
[blesses herself]

It lives at the Cathedral   
and seems to be some kind of   
mascot for   



The future art you’ll make and its pleasure   
is hedged against the   
boys who died   

you fancied.

Source: Poetry (December 2008).


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

December 2008
 Ange  Mlinko


Ange Mlinko is the author of three books, Shoulder Season (Coffee House Press, 2010), Starred Wire (Coffee House Press, 2005), which was a National Poetry Series winner in 2004 and a finalist for the James Laughlin Award, and Matinees (Zoland Books, 1999). In 2009, she won the Randall Jarrell Award in Criticism. Mlinko was born in Philadelphia, and has worked in Brooklyn, Providence, Boston, and Morocco. She has taught poetry at . . .

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SUBJECT Social Commentaries, Money & Economics, Popular Culture

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