Terence Winch

Subject to Change

Volume 16:1, Winter 2015
The Sonnet Issue

Subject to Change

Let us shove the last 73 minutes down the garbage
disposal and vacuum up all traces of the past 17 years
and stuff them in a plastic bag and be done with them.
Let’s scrape our alternative versions of everything
we have learned since 1981 off the ground and flush
them all down the toilet. I’m worn out by my misdeeds.
My hands hurt, my fingers won’t curl anymore.
I’m in the emergency room at Holy Cross hoping
all is not lost. I have no one to pray to, just the vast
empty sky, the black hole inside the black hole
that swallows up everything whole. They make
me lie down on the blank slate. Dr. Baker is running
late. Then the nurse lifts the curse and Baker says
you’re a lucky man. It could have been worse.

 

Terence Winch is the author of eight poetry collections, the most recent of which is The Known Universe (2018). A Columbia Book Award and American Book Award winner, he has also written a young adult novel called Seeing-Eye Boy and two story collections, Contenders and That Special Place, the latter drawing on his life as a traditional Irish musician. His work is included in more than 40 anthologies, among them the Oxford Book of American Poetry, Poetry 180, and 5 editions of Best American Poetry. He is the recipient of an NEA Fellowship and a Gertrude Stein Award for Innovative Writing, among other honors. Terence Winch edits the “Pick of the Week” feature on the Best American Poetry site.