"This work is unlike any other, in its range of rich, conjuring imagery and its dexterity, its smart voice. Carroll-Hackett doesn’t spare us—but doesn’t save us—she draws a blueprint of power and class with her unflinching pivot: matter-of-fact and tender." —Jan Beatty

What’s Broken

Dorianne Laux
The slate black sky. The middle step
of the back porch. And long ago
my mother’s necklace, the beads
rolling north and south. Broken
the rose stem, water into drops, glass
knobs on the bedroom door. Last summer’s
pot of parsley and mint, white roots
shooting like streamers through the cracks.
Years ago the cat’s tail, the bird bath,
the car hood’s rusted latch. Broken
little finger on my right hand at birth—
I was pulled out too fast. What hasn’t
been rent, divided, split? Broken
the days into nights, the night sky
into stars, the stars into patterns
I make up as I trace them
with a broken-off blade
of grass. Possible, unthinkable,
the cricket’s tiny back as I lie
on the lawn in the dark, my heart
a blue cup fallen from someone’s hands.
blue cup
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