Incident Along Route 50

In reality, the barn wasn’t clean, ninety men
and a woman sobbing in a hospital gown, Not fair.
And look! That cowboy
as he flicks his razor.
Nine months later, my brother was born.

         Norman Dubie | Trakl
         Laura Kasischke | Warehouse of Prayers
         Gloria Frym | Looking for Trouble
         Frank O’Hara | Southampton Variations
         Marilyn Hacker | Days of 1944: Three Friends


  1. I love all of these! As usual you've set yourself a high bar with DAILY?? Centos? Wow. Did you say how the titles were conjured?

  2. Thanks, Alexis.

    After random sampling of the poems, I see what each cento evokes for me in terms of a title.

    On Tuesday it was Wordsworth's famous definition of poetry, and yesterday it was a phrase from "The Evening Darkens Over," by Robert Bridges ("There's not a ship in sight; / And as the sun goes under, / Thick clouds conspire to cover / The moon that should rise yonder").

    Today and Wednesday I just waited for imagination to offer a context, and so it goes.