you were the first though you were not
the first that is I had known others though
I hadn’t known some only after you knew
us but you didn’t know us you looked around
the white room the bright air your body all
agitation my fella once yours stood at the foot
of your bed and rubbed your feet beneath the sheets
and we talked a bit about your dog your cat your
sister till you calmed that was the last time we saw
you watched him old friend quiet still listening
Ed Madden is the author of Ark (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2016), Nest (Salmon Poetry, 2014), My Father’s House (Seven Kitchens Press, 2013), and Prodigal: Variations (Lethe Press, 2011). His poems have appeared in Assaracus, Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, James Joyce Quarterly, Los Angeles Review, Poetry Ireland Review, and other journals, as well as in the anthologies Collective Brightness: LBGTIQ Poets on Faith, Religion, and Spirituality (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2011), Best Gay Poetry 2008 (A Midsummer Night’s Press, 2009), and Texas Poetry Calendar 2010 (Dos Gatos Press, 2009), among others. Ed is an associate professor of English and director of Women’s & Gender Studies at the University of South Carolina, and serves as the poet laureate of Columbia, South Carolina.
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