Time is a heady gardenia, white scent
pulling me into the green underswell
in which I am young and still unstacking
the matryoshka doll of his mind.
A desire path, the internet says,
is a consequence of unruliness,
through foliage an unplanned line not set
by formal design. They expedite
our wanting of home, of fields with their herds
of bells, of fish the patient fisherman
silvers the end of his hook with. Cow path,
pig trail, goat track, game trail, path that compulsion
leads us to suffer, the uncharted road
between us like orchards the dead light up.
Matthew Gellman is the author of Night Logic, selected by Denise Duhamel as the winner of Tupelo Press's 2021 Snowbound Chapbook Award. His first book, Beforelight, was selected by Tina Chang as the winner of the A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize and is forthcoming from BOA Editions. A 2023–2024 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow, Matthew has also received awards and honors from Brooklyn Poets, the Adroit Journal's Djanikian Scholars Program, the Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts, the New York State Summer Writers Institute, and the Academy of American Poets. His poems have appeared in Poetry Northwest, Narrative, the Common, North American Review, Indiana Review, Ninth Letter, the Nashville Review, Waxwing, Lambda Literary's Poetry Spotlight and other publications. Matthew holds an MFA from Columbia University and lives in New York, where he teaches at Hunter College and Fordham University.
Tuesday, 14 November 2023