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Wednesday, May 19, 2010


by Michael Graves

In the interrogation room,
A man behind a desk.
I am standing before it.
He looks up from the folder
That contains my file.

Like the cloud-covered dawn of a sun
Over bare mountains
In a desolate winter.
His lean-jawed face
Break’s into a sadist’s smile.
Each of his eyebrows is a word.
The left is republican.
The right is democrat.

He says, “I am going to ask questions
Impossible to answer.”

Michael Graves is the author of a full-length collection of poems, Adam and Cain (Black Buzzard, 2006) and two chapbooks, Illegal Border Crosser (Cervana Barva, 2008) and Outside St. Jude’s (R. E. M. Press, 1990). In two thousand four (2004), he was the recipient of a grant of four thousand five hundred dollars ($4,500.00) from the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation. He is the  publisher of the small magazine PHOENIX. Many years ago,  he was a student of James Wright and organized a conference on James Wright at Poets House in 2004. With Victor Schermer, he is the co-author of “The Wounded Male Persona and the Mysterious Feminine in "The Poetry of James Wright: A Study in the Transformation of the Self” (The Psychoanalytic Review, 1998).