Home > Words of Power > Looking for an Oracle

Looking for an Oracle

November 24, 2009

by Amy MacLennan


Spool it on out for me: where to turn left,
the bananas to pick, the men to catch,
the men to ditch, tell me when my nails
will break and the roof will fail,
tip me to gossips and scratched-out phone book names,
list out my losses (hearing gone in ten years,
the loves I’ll bury),
line them up so I can swallow them all
without the coil of worry –
choice never stopped the clots in anyone’s veins
or the smooth sky pressing down,
and I want my days laid flat,
my facts splayed out, a plan, a map,
to the last damn chicken bone
that sticks in my throat.

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Amy MacLennan has been published or has work forthcoming in Hayden’s Ferry Review, River Styx, Linebreak, Cimarron Review, Folio and Rattle. Her poems are forthcoming in the anthologies Not a Muse from Haven Books and Eating Her Wedding Dress: A Collection of Clothing Poems from Ragged Sky Press.

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  1. November 24, 2009 at 12:22 pm | #1

    Amy– Great work. Love the ending!

  2. November 24, 2009 at 2:35 pm | #2

    Wonderful poem, Amy! Great sounds throughout as well as images– “tip me to gossips…list out my losses”–really nice

  3. Heather Reid
    November 24, 2009 at 6:22 pm | #3

    Amy, I think this is fantastic – choice never stopped the clots in anyone’s veins is a great line. I’ve often thought that life would be a lot less stressful if you were given some clues to where it was all going, you’ve summed it up beautifully here.

  4. November 25, 2009 at 1:30 pm | #4

    Great poem with specific details that lead to a strong ominous ending.

  5. Amy MacLennan
    November 29, 2009 at 3:27 pm | #5

    Many thanks, all, for your very kind comments.

  6. Julie Weber
    December 20, 2009 at 12:04 pm | #6

    Slick work, Amy. My kind of Love poem– determined and haunted.

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