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Our poetry editor, Joe Pan, has selected four poems by Eileen Myles for his monthly series that brings original poetry to the screens of Hyperallergic readers.

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A Cern mural in Brooklyn, by Luna Park (via Luna Park’s Flickrstream)

EL DIABLITO

I let you wisp in here a little
There that’s nice
lights flashing
music thumping
I’m heading to do a reading
of course
the cute waitress delivers the guys’
food & I’m afraid she caught
me making eating faces
chewing seriously now saying
goodbye to Thich Gnat
Hahn how many people always
will think about you when they are
chewing. There’s hardly anything on
the planet that isn’t improved
by a little lime; happy squeeze
this sailor will never get scurvy

I wonder if she feels different
when she serves him
Today at the gym this woman
said you always look so cute
one of the few times I ever
looked at my x’s twitter
feed someone had told her
she had beautiful hair
I thought gross what a narcissist
Well it’s not like I said someone
at the gym said I ALWAYS
look cute on social media
No one may ever read this
maybe some archivist at Yale
will wind up with my phone
and lean over to another
graduate student look someone
at the gym told her she ALWAYS
looked cute. Covers his mouth
laughing. Maybe I’ll lose this
phone. Narcissistic little thought
You will not die alone
I’ll read you tonight
at KGB.

HARP

Once when
we were
broken up

I set up
a Christmas
tree & covered
it in pink
light. &

went out &
bought a teevee
set that
did every
thing. which

is now
a symbol
of decay

& yet I
want to
slather
my
self
in
that
day

Paradise

which
I never know
how to
spell  it’s
with me always

SILVIA

Later the whole
generosity
of dogs & the
silver
sun. My loneliness
like a sash
that boat
in the distance.
Triangle
heart. Sylph
w a beard
got wet &
gleam-
ing black.

What I like
about you.

go deeper
now
into the
present

out there
with
the kid
on the swing
everybody
sit there.
Doesn’t
mean I’ll be here
when I am.

Kids out there.
What is divinity.
Turns out something
really large
is on the
swing.

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Eileen Myles lives in New York, and her selected poems I Must Be Living Twice and a reissue of Chelsea Girls are coming out very soon from Ecco/Harper Collins. 

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Joe Pan

Joe Pan grew up along the Space Coast of Florida and attended the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. His debut poetry book, Autobiomythography & Gallery, was named “Best First Book of the Year”...

7 replies on “Four Poems by Eileen Myles”

  1. I gotta ask- is “Thich Gnat Hahn” an autocorrect abomination, or a great nickname.

      1. I know who Thích Nhất Hạnh is. If I didn’t, there would be no reason for me to ask. Google turns up no uses of “Thich Gnat Hahn,” so the question of autocorrect or clever nickname still stands.

  2. I enjoyed Eileen’s poetry very much and one nice thing about them is that they demand that you read them more than once. That’s a good thing.
    Shaun, try googling Thich Gnat Hanh, you might learn something.

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