Audrey Gradzewicz

In a dream I had last night, I wandered
a dormitory as a pair of blue lungs.

I could analyze it for you this way:
There is nothing more naked

than the need for air. This morning,
I received a letter from North Pole, Alaska,     

and imagined my ex's rugged uncle
traveling for thousands of cold miles

to hand me his delicate cursive,
to ask, so kindly, if I would, please,

send a postcard to my ex in a hospital
for the criminally insane, somewhere

in the flatness of Indiana. When I lived
in Indiana, I met a man on a bridge

who held his own eye in the palm
of his hand. He asked me for a quarter

to help buy a hearing aid for his brother.
Who could hear past such desolation?

If you ask me what this poem means,
I’ll say body.

Ask me what body means,
and I’ll say body.





This poem originally had a cornfield in it, but was always thankfully devoid of He Who Walks Behind the Rows. Two books are important to the composition of this poem: Black Swan by Lyrae Van Clief-Stefanon, and The Trotula, which is my favorite of all medieval gynecological handbooks.