Changing Partners

He brings her flowers, pinched
from the widow’s window
box, takes her
away from her books, her thoughts,
to walk in the city at night
when the streets are slick
with rain, streaking
lights from the shops, the chic
bars, the traffic, the fountains.
She cannot hold him. His face
breaks and slides away
in her dreams. He appears
without warning, sweeps
her up in his brief
obsessions. When he leaves
there is the pulse
of an absent bell, a space
aching with promise.

~ George Amabile

George Amabile has published poetry, fiction and non -fiction in Canada, the USA, Europe, South America, Australia and New Zealand in over a hundred anthologies, magazines, journals and periodicals including The Penguin Book of Canadian Verse, The New Yorker Book of Poems, Saturday Night, The New Yorker, Harper’s, Poetry, American Poetry Review, Poetry Australia, Sur (Buenos Aires), Poetry Canada Review, Canadian Literature, and Margin (England). He has edited The Far Point, Northern Light and has published eight books. The Presence of Fire (McClelland & Stewart, 1982), won the CAA National Prize for literature, his long poem, Durée, placed third in the CBC Literary Competition for 1991; “Popular Crime” won first prize in the Sidney Booktown International Poetry Contest in February, 2000; “Road to the Sky” received an honorable mention National Magazine Award for 2000, “What We Take with Us, Going Away” was shortlisted for the CBC Literary Prize in 2003, and “Dimuendo” was awarded third prize in the Petra Kenney International Poetry Competition for 2005. He is the subject of a special issue of Prairie Fire, (Vol. 21, No. 1, May 2000). From October 2000 to April 2001 he was Writer in Residence at the Winnipeg Public library. His most recent publication is Tasting the Dark: New and Selected Poems (The Muses Company, an imprint of J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing Inc. Winnipeg, 2001).

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