Katharine Coles


Don't care about brightness
Anymore, how or not
Light happens, don't care about
Dark. Why think hours

Fly or the queen ant draggles
Wings across the table, lost. The world          
Does what it does, turning
Out life and infinite  

Endings creation performs
More ingeniously than starts. Variety,
Count the ways I might
Poof and hiss, some poor let-

Go balloon blowing itself into
Backflip smithereens. So soon?






The word "draggle" comes to me out of my pursuit, initially, of words my friend Patrick calls "lost positives"—verbs for which a negative version still exists but for which the direct positive no longer does (plus/nonplus, tort/distort). Out of this has grown my curiosity about similar words where a version with a prefix is still in use ("bedraggle," "bewilder"), but the un-prefixed version has fallen into the realm of the arcane. One of my small projects as a poet is to make such words visible again, however briefly.