National Poetry Month Day 29: Jay Deshpande


Jay Deshpande is the author of Love the Stranger, named a top debut of 2015 by Poets & Writers, and of the chapbook The Rest of the Body (both from YesYes Books). His poems have appeared in Boston Review, Denver Quarterly, Narrative, and elsewhere. A graduate of Harvard University and Columbia University’s School of the Arts, he has received fellowships or support from Kundiman, Civitella Ranieri, Saltonstall Arts Colony, and the Key West Literary Seminar. He is at work on a collection of poems and on a book of translations of Egyptian surrealist Georges Henein. In the fall he will be a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. 



My earliest memory is holding one,

Midday though I told it my closed fist awake

_____Was another to hand altogether.

And I rode on that, thought boarded up green as it got

Its own feet in me the slow way,

_____The slow highway between islands.

My parents put me there in tender wilds where none

Was so much mine as an hour.

_____Don’t let me out of it, I said as sung to many.

I kept the teeth of my fingers clutched around green that

Called out blue until it left me, or sun did, and waited for longing

_____To love to pick me up.

Original poetry published by The Rumpus. More from this author →