"'Life, it appears, is simple,' Tami Haaland says toward the end of this book. Her poetry captures the complicated feelings of parents and children, men and women, boys and girls, as they enact their family dramas. At the heart of this collection is an account of a unique and unbearable loss, the kind which makes life anything but simple. Yet Haaland writes with such clarity and sanity and fluent formal skill that she does make life appear simple, even as she shows us again and again it is not. When We Wake in the Night is a remarkable achievement."
- Mark JarmanThe Kiss
My friend and I circle "The Kiss," Rodin's
tribute to the lovers who were left, then caught
and killed for their failure to fail in
love. Look at the way they nearly resist
the embrace: their left arms not quite engaged,
her arm raised to encircle his shoulder and
his hand around but not resting, almost freed
from her hip. They sit close so ribs expanded
in breath must have let each body lean
to the other, and when breath began to coincide,
then each slipping to the space between
must have caused this kiss, my friend and I decide.
He stands on one side and I on the other.
Separate ends, a perfect diameter.
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