Poem of the Week

Detour Around a Garden

Suphil Lee Park

Where the tunnel ends night opens
its toothless goldfish’s mouth.
This is the beginning of drumming: we’re liable
to keep from the truth of our being
those who kept us from the truth of theirs.
Forecastable birds dust a bonsai garden in the dark.
Every weathered garden corrects its map of spring.
The moonlit river breaks out in a postrider’s sweat
we watch as if we’ve never seen the glimmer
of stockinged legs. What the drumming promised
comes, first, in pulsations. We have come
too far from the beginning, muzzled, covered
in down, under which we each have been young.
Didn’t we harbor some heavenly sundown, clouds heaving
with some rash rain. Where night ends
the tunnel presses its mouth, cheek
to cheek, taking every time this too-far way.

Suphil Lee Park is the author of Present Tense Complex, winner of the Marystina Santiestevan Prize. Her work has appeared in Ploughshares, The Massachusetts Review, and Writer’s Digest, among other journals.
Originally published:
September 15, 2021

Featured

Essays

Suicide in Fiction, Reconsidered

Why we need stories about living after a suicide attempt
Morgan Thomas

Conversations

Discipline and Abolish

Writing, power, and mass incarceration
Rachel Kushner,
Caleb Smith

Essays

How to Come Back to Life

On reaching middle age and carrying on
Emily Ogden

You Might Also Like

Poem of the Week

There is An Intimacy

Melissa Lozada-Oliva

Poem of the Week

Shoe Box

Carol Moldaw

Poem of the Week

Axolotl

Amy Roa

Subscribe

Become a subscriber to get four beautiful issues a year for just $49—and help keep print culture alive.
Subscribe