Poem of the Week

(The Mothman Watches a TV Movie and Resolves to Steal the Declaration of Independence)

Robert Wood Lynn

Does it have to be true, that everything

    we touch, we break a little? Josh’s garden fence.

My bicycle. Reva’s walk to work after you

      shouted her name. Can you give me something

of a counterexample? I ran out yesterday—

      the TV showed pictures of labs in California

so sterile breathing was its own kind

      of crime. We always thought of ourselves

as too small to smudge anything, yet by design

      or indifference, our flashes bleached even

the founding parchments. No one knows

      what they will do with power until they have it.

None of us believes we got it when they do.

Robert Wood Lynn is the author of Mothman Apologia, which was selected by Rae Armantrout for the Yale Series of Younger Poets Prize. He splits his time between Brooklyn, New York and Rockbridge County, Virginia.
Originally published:
March 21, 2022

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