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Eileen G'Sell

Ode to Clint Eastwood

Living Proof

Ode to Clint Eastwood

This is the land I love.

When I love it is like I am dying
to make a very moving story.

When I move it is like I am dying
to make a story that you love.

Skyline, stranger, bullet hole of light,
they say there is nothing
but unjust clouds to break us

into morning. Not the past,
a promise, a polygraph tricked.
Not bad ibuprofen, not Namaste.

We escape to perfect, empty streets,
angry women. We never escape.

Clint, your very name
sounds like scowling at the sunset.

Do I feel lucky? Only if you do.


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Living Proof

I could have set you free. If almonds hadn’t
made me skinny, the world would look a lot
wholesomer. Hold on to my bag of ruffled
streetmaps. Here, a passage. Waterfall
waffles. There, a pile of homeless bottles.
A world less easy

would finish me. I would deserve this,
to know great weight, to kneel, to fall
from the skirt of the city.

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Eileen G’Sell teaches creative writing and composition at Washington University in St. Louis, where she works in publications for the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum. Recent and forthcoming work can be found in Boston Review, Ninth Letter, Sonora Review and Associative Press.

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