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The Great Tsunami

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She recognizes its crest in the way he looks at her. 
The wave is as vast as the roiling mass in the Japanese
Print they had paused in front of at the museum,
Capped with ringlets of foam, all surging sinew.
That little village along the shore would be
Totally lost. There is no escaping this.
The wave is flooding his heart,
And he is sending the flood
Her way. It rushes
Over her.

Can you look at one face
For the whole of a life?

Does the moon peer down
At the tides and hunger for home?

Reprinted by permission of the author.
Source: Poetry (Poetry)

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

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The Great Tsunami

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  • Poet, teacher, and editor Michele Wolf was raised in Miami, but has spent much of her life in New York City or just outside Washington D.C., in Maryland. She earned degrees from Boston University and Columbia University, and began to write poetry seriously after winning a scholarship in non-fiction to attend the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. There, Wolf says, she had a “transformative experience…it was the first time I was exposed to contemporary poetry, saw it valued, heard poems read aloud by their authors. I was deeply moved and knew this was the kind of writing I wanted to create.”
     
    Wolf is the author of two books of poetry, Immersion (2011), selected by Denise Duhamel for the Hilary Tham Capital Collection, and Conversations During Sleep (1998), which won the Anhinga Prize for Poetry. Her chapbook, The Keeper of Light (1995), won the Painted Bride Quarterly Poetry Chapbook Series....

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