Excerpt from GIMME THE PRETTY: SONNETS, poetry by Devon Wootten

What hath might & what hath lament—
Reader, banality’s preferable,

i.e., bad faith &/or dialectic,
intolerable ambiguity.

Reader, take the easy way,
mankind &


Reader, I’d elsewhere’d it—
sensed & re-sensed,
made full & made whole.
them’s the most-dead.
Them’s the foolishness.
T’ave found want.
T’ave found what’s lack &

t’ave fasted on’t—
O, well-nigh incarnate,
stay with me.
O, hold-out,
O, cut of mine,

what’s lent unto this world’s unthinking &
I, / I’s barely recompense.
You just, / you

’s & all that’s fletched, / all that’s flown.

Devon Wootten is a faculty member at Whitman College. His work has appeared in Best American Experimental Writing, Fence, LIT, Aufgabe, Colorado Review, Drunken Boat, Octopus, RHINO, and Posit, among others. A former resident of Yaddo and Anderson ranch, he is a graduate of the MFA program at the University of Montana and ABD in the Comparative Literature Program at the University of Iowa. He lives with his wife among the wheat fields of southeast Washington. He is responsible for bestamericanyou.com and wikipoesis.com.

Image: oxfordstudent.com

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