Imitation

By JONATHAN FINK

The eating is like make-believe, a game
of imitation—sawdust pressed between
two hands becomes a pancake; soup pots steam
with buttons, leather. Call your mother’s name,
and she will search for food for you the same
as every other parent. Hallways teem
with children. Turning as if in a stream,
they rise together, speak together, claim
in unison that love will never save
them. Love alone, the river answers back,
the river from a dream, two dreams, two halves,
the mother/father, daughter/son, the track
that runs from mouth to stomach. Eat. Just eat,
your mother says, as if the word were fact.

 

Jonathan Fink is an associate professor and the director of creative writing at the University of West Florida. Dzanc Books recently published his poetry book, The Crossing, and he has also received the Editors’ Prize in Poetry from The Missouri Review; the McGinnis-Ritchie Award for Nonfiction, Essay, from the Southwest Review; and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs, and Emory University, among other institutions. 

[Purchase your copy of Issue 10 here.]

Imitation

Related Posts

Old ship at sunset

June 2020 Poetry Feature: David Mills

DAVID MILLS
When I’m cursing them tanners under / my breath’s breath, I speak Yankeyfied / Negro / English. Gathered bit of limping / French and Spanish on a voyage // to Cadiz; anchor jarring the sleepy / waters of Caleta. Beach pinched / between two castles.

ruckus

VAUGHN M. WATSON
a rotor spins in concentric circles / the epicenter a DC street at dusk / even a military helicopter’s incessant droning / can’t wake this country to its circumstance / locals peer through the gaps in their blinds / trying to see what all the ruckus is about

May 2020 Poetry Feature

KERRY JAMES EVANS
Everyone’s so proud / of Jethro for seeing the light, / which he will truly see next Tuesday, / when he rolls his Ford F-150 over a guardrail / and into the Buttahatchee River, / where so many dead bodies / have been devoured, even the river / has lost count...