Home PageArchivesVolume no. 4Issue 1Poetry: Rachel Moritz


Rachel Moritz

[audio:https://newfound.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/itinerant.mp3|titles=”Itinerant” at Newfound |artists=Rachel Moritz]  
Boston 1983
Whatever alibi the fountain kept,
we won’t discover.

            City streets grayed over

like an advent calendar you didn’t want
to open

where each speck walked across—
transient, human.

The temple dome and its lucent hello;

Christian Science sequencing water
where God

threw his light, his pool
for tossing pennies; he’d become

the tourist more now
than here.


A cockroach flew home with us,
swollen equatorial

abiding in a moving box
by the cobra smoked

of blood,

and proving whatever we knew
as the past was haunted

by shape,
how distance withers.

That same glass globe we traveled
in the hushed room,

each ignescent country:

its name, weightless,
its blue borders.


What was familiar.

What sidewalks            grafted from Reaganite snow.

Hands bared the breath through thin walls, row house
windows bricked up like strays.

Did you come from the hills
over there?

I swallowed a scrap paper written down with relative

What boat keeled with bodies
where ‘there’ remained

            —the people without

Post-Vietnam, pre-
Aquino on his airplane tarmac.

How someone was always male
when he died; someone decanting event

into death,
where time went.

Rachel Moritz is the author of two chapbooks, “Night-Sea” (2008) and “The Winchester Monologues” (2005), both from New Michigan Press. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Aufgabe, Cannibal, Colorado Review, and other journals. She lives in Minneapolis, where she publishes a chaplet series from WinteRed Press and edits poetry for Konundrum Engine Literary Review.

Leave a Reply