Boyer Rickel | Musick’s Hand-Maid

Rickel_Musick's Hand-Maid_web

Musick’s Hand-Maid: sonnets by Boyer Rickel. Number 3.06 in the Seven Kitchens Press Editor’s Series.

Cover: portrait of Henry Purcell.

Release date: March 21, 2018 [100 copies]

Boyer Rickel’s other publications include two poetry collections, remanence (Parlor Press) and arreboles (Wesleyan), a memoir-in-essays, Taboo (Wisconsin), as well as two poetry chapbooks, Tempo Rubato (Green Linden Press) and reliquary (Seven Kitchens Press). Recipient of poetry fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and Arizona Commission on the Arts, he taught in the University of Arizona Creative Writing Program for twenty years.


Waiting for a sign now that his heart has stopped–   
like some tabloid hoax, like those Virgin 
sightings. Mary’s face in a tree stump. So he joins 
all my other voiceless ghosts. I’d hoped  
time would implode that mountain, but he’s topped  
the pile: my infant nephew and three old aunts,  
the geologic accretion of friends’ parents 
I ex-out in my address book. Names lopped  

like blighted tree limbs. I’d like to think I’m 
slipping my chains, or just editing to essence; it stands
to reason loss purifies the soul . . .  
Such clichés burn the tongue. Live coals.  
Death, grant a son’s impossible whim:  
to hear that voice, to touch those giant hands. 

  • Purchase Musick’s Hand-Maid here or send an e-mail query to sevenkitchenspress at gmail dot com.
  • Visit Boyer’s web site here.