Thirst and other poems

Thirst and other poems

Four poems by US poet and editor Leslie McGrath, the author of Opulent Hunger, Opulent Rage, which was a finalist for the 2010 Connecticut Book Award for Poetry, under World Poetry/Prose Portfolio curated by Sudeep Sen

Toreador Figurine Draped in Honeycomb

Let the bees do what they do —

in flight, in searching, in swiping
gold from golden
all in service to their queen.

They have waxworked the toreador’s
thin porcelain nose and rouged cheek. He peers

over the right shoulder of his traje de luces
made divine by their apian veil.

Draped over his sleek black hair
it fans at his back like a beckoning.

A nursery awaits its brood

and time’s dumb curved horn
which will tear it open, give them breath.

Shoulder Season

Four inches of snow
four hours of rain
then dozens 
of robins.


She with
her sac
of eggs
strung between
curved wall 
& clapper 
doesn’t know
her world’s 
a bell.


Up from our slack river fox tracks a path
past an apple slick parched bees now occupy.

Drought has poached the tomato plants
strangled the new-planted dogwood
brought low the foragers. Poor foragers.

August, you have done your job 
of exhausting us 

all but the fox 
who hurries to her fate.
Her fine red mettle level as water.

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