A Poem by Taije Silverman

by Mark Bibbins, Editor


All the pretty girls.
Parsley, sage, salt, glue.
And you’re a big help to him
says my husband’s father
when I share his news of promotion.
Hey, hey, buckle my shoe,
No sing me a new song mama
says my son before bed.
All the pretty girls.
No a new song.
Lost my partner what’ll I do,
lost my partner what’ll I do.
Skip to my lou my darling.
No another song.
Hey little girl is your daddy home
did he go and leave you all alone
I got a bad desire.
Where am I going with this
I’m thinking while he watches
his pillow to picture the words.
All the pretty girls.
He fucked the shit out of her explained
my father about the plot of a movie he’d seen.
The pretty girls.
Do you have to say that to me?
Mama another one. Mama a new one.
Well I’m sorry but that’s what he did.
You’re a big help to him.
All the pretty girls.

Taije Silverman’s first book, Houses Are Fields, was published by LSU Press in 2009. Her poems and translations from the Italian appear in Poetry, Ploughshares, The Nation, The Best American Poetry 2016, and elsewhere. She has received a Fulbright Scholarship and an Emory University Poetry Fellowship, and currently teaches poetry and translation at the University of Pennsylvania.

You will find more poems here. You may contact the editor at poems@theawl.com.