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Final Notations: Extramarital

February 7, 2012

by Marilyn Annucci

after Adrienne Rich

it will not be a marriage, it will not be short
it will feel timeless, it will consume your mind
it will peel you to the core, it will find you
it will be winged, it will not be a marriage

it will be the air between your bones, it will steal your breath
it will not be short, it will consume your thought
as Jesus consumed death, as flame consumes grass
it will take all your heart, it will not be a marriage

You are walking onto water that will spill you
you are walking onto water that could never hold you

you are taking others into drowning you will live
you are going through your days with two hearts

it will be winged, it will find you
it will not be a marriage, it will become your one desire


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Marilyn Annucci won the 2012 Sunken Garden Poetry Prize, selected by Tony Hoagland, with a chapbook forthcoming from Hill-Stead Museum in June. She is the author of the chapbook Luck, from Parallel Press, and has had work in various journals online and in print. She was raised in Worcester, Massachusetts, and she worked for many years as an editor/writer before earning an MFA from the University of Pittsburgh, where she began her teaching career. She is now an associate professor in the Department of Languages and Literatures at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. She is currently working on a manuscript of poems called After Her that draws on the literary tradition of imitatio.

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  1. February 8, 2012 at 10:36 am

    This is such a beautiful, lyrical, truth-told poem. Thank you, Marilyn, for sharing it.

  2. Irene Brown
    February 8, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Just beautiful.

  3. February 8, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    Brava, Marilyn. Great poem and nice job reading it! Good to see you at qarrtsiluni.

  4. February 10, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    Mary Alexandra Agner recommended this on her blog (pantoum.org). It is a rich ripple outward from the Rich — I will enjoy revisiting this.

  5. February 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    Lovely! An interesting turn from the original source, and an homage rather than a parody.

  6. Sara Parrell
    February 11, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    Leaves me breathless. Thank you, Marilyn.

  7. Lois
    February 14, 2012 at 10:22 pm

    Lovely and perfect for this day…

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