Heather McHugh Poems

Hit Title Date Added
1.
What He Thought

We were supposed to do a job in Italy
and, full of our feeling for
ourselves (our sense of being
Poets from America) we went
...

2.
Stroke

The literate are ill-prepared for this
snap in the line of life:
the day turns a trick
of twisted tongues and is
...

3.
Nano-Knowledge

There, a little right
of Ursus Major, is
the Milky Way:
a man can point it out,
...

4.
The Father Of The Predicaments

He came at night to each of us asleep
And trained us in the virtues we most lacked.
Me he admonished to return his stare
Correctly, without fear.Unless I could,
...

5.
Ghazal Of The Better-Unbegun

Too volatile, am I?too voluble?too much a word-person?
I blame the soup:I'm a primordially
stirred person.
...

6.
With Due Respect To Thor

7.
Ghoti

The gh comes from rough, the o from women's,
and the ti from unmentionables--presto:
there's the perfect English instance of
unlovablility--complete
...

8.
Etymological Dirge

'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear.

Calm comes from burning.
Tall comes from fast.
...

9.
Language Lesson 1976

When Americans say a man
takes liberties, they mean

he's gone too far. In Philadelphia today I saw
a kid on a leash look mom-ward

and announce his fondest wish: one
bicentennial burger, hold

the relish. Hold is forget,
in American.

On the courts of Philadelphia
the rich prepare

to serve, to fault. The language is a game as well,
in which love can mean nothing,

doubletalk mean lie. I'm saying
doubletalk with me. I'm saying

go so far the customs are untold.
Make nothing without words,

and let me be
the one you never hold.
...

10.
The Woman Who Laughed On Calvary


Smilers, smirkers, chucklers, grinners,
platitudinizers, euphemists: it wasn't you

I emulated there, in that
Godawful place. What kind
...