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Weekly Poem: ‘Distal’


By Carol Ann Davis

As I walk along St. Philips, dusk fills my lungs
and the bells of six o’clock make equations
in the air. On my corner
the lights set the church on fire,
the houses surround in a kind of kneel.

Where’s Fra Angelico now? I’ve wanted to lick
his frescoes and taste watercolor ribs.
I’ve wanted to eat off Flow Blue
before machines made lines precise enough

the ceramic no longer gave. If I’m still,
things around me move back in their tracks,
but not far enough. It will be hard to see it

when my own heart
drops into my hand like a fish.
It will be hard to be done seeing.


Carol Ann Davis has recent or forthcoming work in Volt, the Iowa Review, the Threepenny Review, the Kenyon Review and Denver Quarterly. Her first book, “Psalm,” was published by Tupelo Press in 2007. She directs the undergraduate creative writing program at the College of Charleston in South Carolina and edits the journal “Crazyhorse” with her husband, poet Garrett Doherty.

The video above was filmed at AWP’s 2011 Conference & Bookfair in Washington, D.C. Special thanks to the Association of Writers & Writing Programs.

Camera and audio work by the NewsHour’s Crispin Lopez and Kiran Moodley.

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