This Gentle Surgery

By Malachi Black Malachi Black
Once more the bright blade of a morning breeze
glides almost too easily through me,

and from the scuffle I’ve been sutured to
some flap of me is freed: I am severed

like a simile: an honest tenor
trembling toward the vehicle I mean

to be: a blackbird licking half notes
from the muscled, sap-damp branches

of the sugar maple tree . . . though I am still
a part of any part of every particle

of me, though I’ll be softly reconstructed
by the white gloves of metonymy,

I grieve: there is no feeling in a cut
that doesn’t heal a bit too much.

Source: Poetry (November 2009).

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This poem originally appeared in the November 2009 issue of Poetry magazine

November 2009
 Malachi  Black

Biography

Malachi Black is the author of Storm Toward Morning (forthcoming 2014 by Copper Canyon Press), and two limited edition chapbooks: Quarantine (2012) and Echolocation (2010). A recipient of a 2009 Ruth Lilly Fellowship, Black has also received recent fellowships and awards from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, the MacDowell Colony, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, the University of . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Health & Illness, Sorrow & Grieving, Nature, The Body

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Poetic Terms Couplet

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