Ann Townsend

(1962 / Pennsylvania / United States)

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Ann Townsend was born in Pittsburgh, raised in Pennsylvania and New Orleans, and earned her BA from Denison University and her MA and PhD in English literature from The Ohio State University. Townsend’s work fuses pastoral, domestic, and metaphysical concerns in verse that is often described as formally subtle and acute. She has cited Andrew Marvell, James Thomson, and John Clare as major ... more »

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Best Poem of Ann Townsend

The Coronary Garden

What a fine package
you've come wrapped in.
A swathing of hospital cotton,

from the brisk whiteness a tulip unfolding from
each wrist.

A conduit, first here then there,
your blood in its orbital system
circled safe in its chamber until

you let it out. Why did you let it out?

Plasma makes a great adhesive, a sticky blessing
between us. But I'm not the wounded one.
They stick together, my fingers,

to the windowpane where I touch it.

With tulips, 'sometimes a rascally roote
produces a gallant ...

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