Man in Garden

The roses, white as mercy, lack mercy.
The lilies are innocently pretty and dull.

Tulips’ fumes blue the evening air:
a single repeated melancholy bar

of an aria, I say—I who haul
the human here, lean back

in a plastic chair, and consider
what’s in this for me. Hurt me,

world, for once, with what
is beautiful and not therapeutically so.

Chris Forhan is the author of three books of poetry and a memoir. He has won a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and two Pushcart Prizes and has earned a “Discover Great New Writers” selection from Barnes and Noble. He lives with his wife, the poet Alessandra Lynch, and their two sons, Milo and Oliver, in Indianapolis, where he teaches at Butler University. For more:

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