Q&A with Thomas Mallon

Thomas Mallon is the author of nine books includinFellow Travelers, Watergate (a Finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award), and A Book of One's Own. He is a contributor to publications such as The New Yorker and The Atlantic Monthly, among others. He is an accomplished essayist and has published two books of essays, Rockets and Rodeos and In Fact). In 2012 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Among his awards are the Vursell prize of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He has a Ph.D. in English and American Literature from Harvard University and former teacher for Vassar College. He currently teaches at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. 

Click here to read our Q&A with Thomas Mallon Q&A with Thomas Mallon

Margaret Koger

A Window for Women

I     sat by my school library window     gazing at the sky
     classes dismissed     students heading home     halls quiet
          when a tumble of black clouds     broke open     revealing
     shafts of sunlight     suddenly streaming     onto a book in my lap
          sunrays flaming     a luminous     View of Delft
Vermeer's painting spinning me     from present to past
          his red blaze of city     bulked against     gray skies
     a foreground     of streaming water     in blue-black shades

In my reverie     voices     cheerleaders after practice
     clustered like a bouquet in the hall     waiting for a ride home
wishing for     dates to the prom M & Ms     June weddings
     & hey! Your shirt     shoes     pants     hair-they're

Young voices     twinning     the image in tablature of Delft
     hovering     before my eyes     in my ears     this virtual Vermeer
painting     in sutu (Holland) two women's     burnished hope
     burnt-umber dreams     his vision of two tiny females
          in black dresses     white scarves     collars
     like dolls     miniatures     of wives     waiting
for transit     perhaps     an arrival     an escape
     or a cargo     deliveries of sugar     pearls     salt

I rested my eyes     on the Schie river     in azurite & ultramarine
     my palette     smudged with tears     for a mingled moment
          women of long ago     fluid teens     my own desire
     for home     to water my plants     read a letter     a presence
of all our longings     lucent     in primary     or secondary
     promise     of rainbows     or sand

View of Delft,  Johannes Vermeer

Margaret Koger is a school media specialist with a writing habit. She lives and teaches in Boise, Idaho and enjoys spending time lounging on a sandy beach bordering the Mediterranean Sea. Her poems have appeared most recently in Mediterranean Poetry, Poetry Breakfast, BLYNKT, Love Askew Anthology, Juke Joint, Little Rose, and Amsterdam Quarterly. "Ripe Figs." was a finalist for the 2018 Joy Bale Boone Poetry Prize.

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