Sugar Dada

By J. Allyn Rosser b. 1957
Go home. It's never what you think it is,
The kiss, the diamond, the slamdance pulse in the wrist.
Nothing is true, my dear, not even this

Rumor of passion you'll doubtless insist
On perceiving in my glance. Please just
Go. Home is never what you think it is.

Meaning lies in meaning's absence. The mist
Is always almost just about to lift.
Nothing is truer. Dear, not even this

Candle can explain its searing twist
Of flame mounted on cool amethyst.
Go on home—not where you think it is,

But where you would expect its comfort least,
In still-black stars our century will miss
Seeing. Nothingness is not as true as this

Faith we grind up with denial: grist
To the midnight mill; morning's catalyst.
Come, let's go home, wherever you think it is.
Nothing is true, my dear. Not even this.

Source: Poetry (February 2001).


This poem originally appeared in the February 2001 issue of Poetry magazine

View this poem in its original format

February 2001
 J. Allyn Rosser


J. Allyn Rosser was born in Pennsylvania and attended Middlebury College in Vermont as well as the University of Pennsylvania where she earned a doctorate. Her works include Bright Moves (1990), winner of the Morse Poetry Prize; Misery Prefigured (2001), winner of the Crab Orchard Award; Foiled Again, winner of The New Criterion Poetry Prize; and Mimi's Trapese (2014). Her poetry has also been published in such periodicals as . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Marriage & Companionship, Home Life, Relationships, Living, Disappointment & Failure

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

Poetic Terms Villanelle

Report a problem with this poem

Your results will be limited to content that appeared in Poetry magazine.

Search Every Issue of Poetry

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.