National Poetry Month: James Reidel

Here at Black Lawrence Press we are celebrating National Poetry Month with a poem a day, featuring a total of 30 authors from our list. Today’s featured poet is James Reidel, author of My Window Seat for Arlena Twigg and Jim’s Book.
She was made to catch herself,
Endowing her forever with this mystery,
This projection,
Of the missing marble arms and painted skin—
The best minds saw a window dresser’s attic of possible gestures,
The worst butcher’s paper,
And mine: unsigned work,
The most strapless gown to work with,
My arms resting atop my blanket like two dropped tools.
My orchid’s pin bends like a cat’s nail between those bared breasts—
I hand it to one of the chaperones standing between the columns.
The temple pigeons coo.
Mirrored stars on the sea spin.
                                  —() after the late Bill Knott
Reidel Author PhotoJames Reidel received his MFA from Columbia University (1983) and has spent much of his life as a poet, independent scholar, and translator. He is the author of Vanished Act: The Life and Art of Weldon Kees (2003). He has also translated and published work by Thomas Bernhard, Walter Gropius, and Franz Werfel, for which he has received a Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts.