Gus at Sixteen

When we are seven and he is four,
Gus drowns himself every day. "I'm thinking,"
he says, and the lifeguards learn
to disregard the screams. Gus floats

face-down in the shallow end,
with his hair like corn silk, hair that
goes green in pool water. His sister and I
do handstands beside the corpse.

Time passes. Us girls get out of the pool
to unwrinkle our fingers: suddenly
we've gone through puberty. Tonight in some lake somewhere
a dreamy Gus is lost in thought.
His poor new girlfriend is screaming.

photo: "Emmett Darling" by Sally Mann


Come Back Brighter said...

Kate. Seriously. I am a big fan of poetry, and have read countless writers over the years. I have a great thick anthology I have barely read.

And yet, you are one of the most consistently brilliant poets I have ever read.

How do you manage it?

Kate Horowitz said...

You are too, too generous. I'm very thankful to you and everybody else who reads and comments. You inspire me and push me and make the poetry better.

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