Bridge to Global Literature

Let’s all remember that more and more poetry gets lost without earnest attempts at translation.Read poetry here to get a glimpse of the rhythms and resonances of languages you don’t know.

Kimilee Norman-Goins

Jun 4, 2021 | Poetry | 0 comments

 
Elizabeth, my name, but my grandmother’s first

I would not have minded it on its own,
but I am not fond of sharing.
I’ll tell you what the name stirs in me
now after a life of living in it.

(A shrieking kettle blisters at the touch.
You’ll steep the name into ceramic and tame it with syrup.
It will grow cold on a windowsill until tomorrow.
A bird will chip his beak on the glass, longing for a bath.

It’s uncut grass rippling against an autumn wind,
the honeysuckle stolen from my neighbor’s fence,
the sour milk from the goat we could not sell
for you loved it like a child.

The crib we made and then put away,
the name we chose
and could never speak again.
Yet I would not have minded it on its own.)

__

god hunger

god learned to spit with perfect aim
out the same mouth that blessed us.
the god who left me on a forest floor–
an unthing to watch from the canopy,
a body filled with blue-hot coal,
without flaw but the crack in my lip
that split with every simper,
a beating heart for a compass, and
a crater
the size of god’s palm at my navel.

__

Artwork by Sohini Ghose
Kimilee Norman-Goins

Kimilee Norman-Goins

Kimilee Norman-Goins writes humbly from New York, NY, supported by her two rescue dogs and (non-rescue) wife. She is still trying to decide which non-dairy milk is superior: almond, oat or coconut. Her work can be found in New York Quarterly, The Florida Review,The Showbear Family Circus, Passengers Journal, The Bangalore Review, For Women Who Roar, and hung up on her mother’s fridge.

Sohini Ghose

Sohini Ghose

Sohini Ghose is an editor and proofreader of over 300 books, including the 2012 Nobel-winner Mo Yan’s book Pow! She has also authored children’s textbooks, which are currently being studied in schools across India. Her current passion is creating digital collages, which she uses as a tool to observe and comment on the world around her.

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