Published on Academy of American Poets (

The Sublime Before (Is Someone's After)

Red-throated hummingbirds spar above

the magnolia. Upwind, something grilled.

The dogs are still alive, yap at whitetail in

the cornfield. The rooster hasn't chased us

down the driveway, so no one got fed up,

loaded the shotgun. Father's heart doesn't

yet float on a pillow of fat. The miscarriage

is years off. Summers, we bleach hair with

lemon, are warm as gold on skin, haven't

glimpsed the shapes we'll be hammered in.


© Copyright 2018 by Luiza Flynn-Goodlett. Used with the permission of the author. This poem originally appeared in Quarterly West Issue 93.


Luiza Flynn-Goodlett

Luiza Flynn-Goodlett is the author of the chapbooks Unseasonable Weather (dancing girl press, 2018) and Congress of Mud (Finishing Line Press, 2015). She serves as the poetry editor at Foglifter Press and lives in Oakland, California.

Date Published: 2018-04-11

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