Whitcomb, Katharine

United States, (contemporary)

A Poem Without a Boar

  1. inside it is not very French. Like a gun on a school bus,
  2. a boar livens things up. I’m for frencher everything.
  4. After snow yesterday the sky broke apart and lulled us
  5. with light again. There’s an unknown number
  7. on the cell phone screen and still I’ll answer. I mean,
  8. you know. Someone might be calling from my father’s
  10. hospital bed, or maybe the maître’d has a table for me
  11. at Chez L’Ami Jean in Paris after all. Once two light bulbs
  13. exploded on the weird electric chandelier in the dining room
  14. while I slept. And once the gendarmes evacuated the Eiffel Tower
  16. an hour after I wandered away down the Champs de Mars.
  17. Of course that had nothing to do with me but I cut my feet
  19. as I shivered there. And FEMA sometimes calls to explain
  20. the flood zone has changed, now insurance rates are higher.
  22. A bomber hides in the crowd maybe—breaking glass
  23. sounds like glass breaking especially from the other room.
  25. Why is the voice on the line never the right one? Like a hairy boar
  26. safe from the hunters or your dad, healthy again and strong.

Used with permission. © Katharine Whitcomb.

About the Poet:

Katharine Whitcomb (contemporary) is a U.S. poet. She earned her B.A. from Macalester College in English. In 1995 she received an MFA in Writing from Vermont College of Norwich University. She lives in Ellensburg, WA, where she is Coordinator of the Writing Specialization English Major at Central Washington University.

Whitcomb is also the editor, along with Robert Hickey and Marco Thompson, of A Sense of Place: The Washington State Geospatial Poetry Anthology, an anthology of poems about particular locations in Washington State, formatted in GoogleEarth.

Whitcomb is the author of a collection of poems, Saints of South Dakota & Other Poems, and two poetry chapbooks. Hosannas and Lamp of Letters, winner of the 2009 Floating Bridge Chapbook Award.

She has had work published in The Paris Review, The Yale Review, The Kenyon Review and The Missouri Review as well as several anthologies, including Fire On Her Tongue, Making Poems, and Dorothy Parker’s Elbow. [DES-07/12]

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