When one graduates from a MFA program, one can be lucky enough to receive a Becca Cento:
Let my blood /call me a stranger, find new ways to be. Mother daughter girlfriend wife woman poet wopoet daughpoet girlpoet friendpoet wifepoet mothpoet terpoet erpoet poet’s poet friend Here is what we say to collapsed breath, crushed by the power of crystalline words: Speak, O violet-winged goddess of truth! But remember …the devil has a green coat and red horns and she is in the details, oh the details / Mary Mallon Victorian flora wandering wombs Van Gogh’s correspondence May bloodletting be transposed and my cistern hold - new wine, renewed wine speaking cantations, found in treasures old. Bright hair Courageous eyes Strong voice Amidst the cries Teacher, advocate Mother with a master’s degree SHE is the chicken I want to be! – it’s all in here, every pin prick tourniquet, every nightmare, every hormonal swell, she says; you know how it is. No matter what I say – this song is sweet, it is sweet, the heart dies of this sweetness. Your alone-ness, woman-ness, mother-ness, poet- yearning-ness live there, in your songs, in the tiny towns and aching roads of your kneelings. Your poems, a constant state of win. Sing these wins —these tributaries are unchartered swells!