Poem 2, June 2    

Poetry Publisher  

“I never publish a poet who writes
in the first person. I don’t care about I
enough to read the poem, &
I never publish a manuscript
by any poet who presumes
to put self above the rest of us,” so
spoke the learned publisher.  

Anne Sexton, he would not have published her,
ending The Black Art, how did it go:
Dear love, I am that girl.  Perhaps he assumes
Walt Whitman’s I celebrate myself too nondescript
to bloom on the page like lilacs for the last time &
who do I think I am that I can write of you, what I
choose—butterfly that circles once—alights  

upon my shoulder?