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Published: Mon Jul 1 2013
Diego Isaias Hernández Méndez, Convertiendse en Characoteles / Sorcerers Changing into Their Animal Forms (detail), 2013, oil on canvas. Arte Maya Tz’utujil Collection.
A Little Death in the World

We found traces of the beginning.
You know what I mean.

If you don’t know what I mean, you will.
Your truth is only as real as mine is.
It was a fact, and not a feeling:
Water, life, and a thrump.

Can we prove happiness? I saw your note,
In the margins, that maybe there is a God.

Then it was gone,
And we could not measure
The distance or the volume
Of that particular loss.

If there were ever a truth, it would be this:
We don’t want to be crazy anymore.

We don’t have the heart for physics.
If it was here, then bring it back.

Beth Woodcome Platow has published poems in various literary magazines including Ploughshares, AGNI online, Memorious, and Gulf Coast. She received the Grolier Prize and the PEN/New England Discovery award. She holds an MFA from Bennington College, teaches at Berklee College of Music, and lives in Newburyport, Massachusetts. (updated 9/2013)

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