Idra Novey

When I'm in a car or on a train, I like thinking about where else I might go if I didn't go to the place where I'm supposed to be headed.  This habit may explain my history of speeding tickets and detours and why I often get off the subway a stop too early, or too late.  I think it also has to do with why I never tire of reading poems.  I love that they can go anywhere, and do.  They can also go nowhere, and I like the honesty of that ending as well.

Bernini said people give themselves away by what happens on their faces just before and after they speak. Poems are also like that—they give themselves away just before, or after, you think you've arrived.

* * *

At the Visitors' Exit

by Idra Novey

I'm no mother myself.

But as for absence,

I'm pretty familiar.


Know the lack in English

for a word like embora

or bedisha, a smallish word 


for a particular kind

of leaving, to say of a person

who can't be reached,


she's gone



To a somewhere

that doesn't allow for trailing

or peering in, an air-shape


like the building hiss

around a plane

on the runway.


The wind-place

that is leaving.

* * *

Poem © Copyright by Idra Novey. All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with the permission of the author.




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