So they can sing: poems by Ed Madden. Number 14 in the Robin Becker Chapbook Series, selected by Julie R. Enszer.
Publication: September 29, 2017 [100 copies]
Cover art by Paul Bilger.
Born and raised in rural Arkansas, Ed Madden is a professor of English and director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program at the University of South Carolina. He is the author of four books of poetry, most recently Ark, a memoir in verse of his father’s last months with cancer. His poems have appeared in Prairie Schooner, Crazyhorse, Poetry Ireland Review, and other journals, as well as in Best New Poets 2007, Hard Lines: Rough South Poetry, and Queer South. In 2015 he was named the poet laureate for the City of Columbia, SC.
That kingfisher, bright, blue, stunning, sudden,
swooping by us
on our suburban walk round the pond
or the three deer in the yard tonight, skittish
in the headlights, then
gone, crashing through the bramble, the woods
nearby; or last fall,
catching that AM cab to the airport,
and just then,
when you stood in the porchlight waving,
that fat raccoon
stalking by in the morning dark, huge,
sometimes I am surprised by the visibility of things–
men marrying one another on television now,
as we did back then
without cameras or sanction of law and celebrity, just
that of friends, family, maybe
the Elvis impersonator at the reception, who lingered
outside the church hall
with his British wife, the both of them smiling,