Alexandra Teague: A Poet You Should Know

May 4, 2009

I’ll get to Alexandra Teague in a moment.

One of the pitfalls of how our culture is moving into disparate niches is that we’re reading work that’s different from our fellow poet. More often than not, I’ll ask another poet what they’re reading and find out that they’re not reading anything I’m reading.

If it’s bad, it’s bad because we have no common ground. It’s bad because we don’t have books informing our culture.

If it’s good, it’s good because we have no common ground. It’s good because we don’t have books informing our culture.

Today, I thought about how I might adore the work of a poet and no one else would be reading or talking about that person. One of these people is Alexandra Teague. I had the pleasure of reading her recent poems in The Missouri Review. I invite you to read some of her work on the web, and to look below for an excerpt. Click to read the rest.

What I Know For Sure

When I look at my abdomen, I see a scar turning
back to lighter skin from where a surgeon cut

five inches across, and just before this, I remember
trying to stop screaming as my intestine ruptured

by reciting names-first middle and last-
of everyone I could think of, though I do not know

for sure if I got all the middle names right,
or if I have ever known yours.

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