Five Ideas for Awesome Poems I Still Think I Will Write One Day

by a contributor

from Taylor Mali, author of Things to Which I Have Compared Our Marriage:

1. Poem about the sign for a lost three-legged dog
The one I saw outside a liquor store in a college town
that read Lost: Three-legged Dog. And how someone
had taped another sign just beneath that read Found:
One Dog Leg.

2. Poem about my friend Genevieve Wilt
And how she said she’d been a slut in high school before she found God,
and how, when I asked her if anyone had ever teased her by saying
Good girls won’t but Genevieve Wilt, she gave me a look that either meant
she was incredibly insulted, I was going to hell, or possibly
that she totally would have slept with me in high school.

3. Poem about the three ways to avoid getting into an accident while driving
Because everyone thinks of slamming on the brakes
and swerving violently and no one remembers that acceleration
can also save your life.

4. Poem about the Empire State Building
And how on some days, from some angles
it seems tall and skinny, but on other days
it’s shorter and thicker.
Also, how ever since September 11th,
it has always seemed smaller than I remember.

5. Poem about my sister’s long blond hair
which she cut off on the first warm day of Spring
while sitting on the deck outside.
How she left the hair there to be blown away by the wind
and, we discovered months later, scavenged
by birds who flew strands of it into the trees
where they wove it into their nests.