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Libby Burton

Libby Burton received a BA from the University of Virginia and an MFA from Columbia University. She is the author of Soft Volcano (Saturnalia Books, 2018), which was selected by Ross Gay as the winner of the 2017 Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize. The recipient of an Amy Award from Poets & Writers, she currently serves as a senior editor at Henry Holt. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

By This Poet


Soft Volcano

                                                  We have done little harms to each other,

and we shared soup when the moment was right.

Remember the nights we animalled until full dawn,

                                                               got vicious and chomped the starlight,

                  the gashed darkness spread like sick around this place.

I still stop dead for the marvelous mouth of you,

                                                      even if our skins droop and waver,

cleft and lift at inopportune times.

                                 Now the scent of baby heads, of mother mouths and dishes.

                   Good morning, little headache of this life I inadvertently chose.

                                                    I wish to make a ravishing of you.