January 2011

Field Guide

a new poem

by Tracy K. Smith
You were you, but now and then you’d change.
Sometimes your face was some or another his,
And when I stood facing it, your body flinched.
You wanted to be alone—left alone.You waded
Into streets dense with people: women wearing
Book bags, or wooden beads. Girls holding smoke
A moment behind red mouths then pushing it out,
Posing, not breathing it in. You smiled
Like a man who knows how to crack a safe.

We hope you enjoy this excerpt.

To read the full piece, please visit our store to purchase a copy of the magazine.

Tracy K. Smith is the author of Duende and The Body’s Question. Her new collection, Life on Mars, will be published in May by Graywolf Press. She teaches at Princeton University.

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