A List of His Flaws

By PETER MISHLER

Single-headed.

Flowering inwardly.

Barely felt in the birth canal.

Medical marketer.

Sick with planet.

Cupped like a handful of sea uncertainly held.

Carried fire to the human encampment.

Herod in boyhood.

An herbicide.

Given name known to the weapons inspectors.

Anchorite.

All alane.

Drowned his horse at the edge of the pier.

Covered in silverfish.

Drank Sutter Home.

Wept but briefly through the grate of mesh.

Fist full of clip-art.

Asked why the mask sweat.

Ancestry swabs in his cheeks like two tusks.

Mouth like a storm drain.

Flashdrive of redheads.

Nudity a vestige from the vault in which he hid.

Did not provide succor, a perch, or a crawlspace.

Became the mother reborn in the son.

Territory manager.

Sloppy kisser.

Face concealer.

Eaten-up thumbs.

Shit-shoveler.

Inner-Caesar.

Underwhelming shield.

Endymion.

 

[Purchase Issue 19 here.] 

Peter Mishler‘s debut collection is Fludde. Other new work appears this year in Granta and The American Poetry Review.

A List of His Flaws

Related Posts

image of a plastic bag caught in a tree.

Translation: Albanian Women Poets

VLORA KONUSHEVCI
Croatia produces a truly royal confectionary / used on special occasions, although some call / it an Ustasha’s chocolate, made in Zagreb by / widows who fed their wounded husbands / to the hungry war deity in Vukovar. / Bosnia’s cevaps are sinfully delicious.

Jane Satterfield headshot next to issue 23

Podcast: Jane Satterfield on “Letter to Emily Brontë”

JANE SATTERFIELD
I think of letters as a form that allows you to have a kind of chatty domestic conversation that also launches out toward larger public issues. It’s a form that allows the writer to almost fall into secrets that they can reveal. It’s interesting in that way; it’s both relaxed and urgent.

Image of a statue of a woman wearing a dress in white against a beige background, cover of Ama Codjoe's poetry collection.

September 2022 Poetry Feature: Ama Codjoe—from BLUEST NUDE

AMA CODJOE
When my mother was pregnant, she drove / every night to the Gulf of Mexico. / Leaving her keys and a towel on the shore, / she waded into the surf. Floating / naked, on her back, turquoise waves / hemming her ears, she allowed / the water to do the carrying.