Simone Muench Poems



One Swallow Doesn’t Make a Summer



  1. A poem is

cuttlebone.  Sugarcube.

It’s a fiction.  A glass of milk.

Baudelaire’s concubine.  An eager

sugar. A lunar reader.

A diary tax.  Conflation of cupboard

and springboard. Conquistador and concerto. 

A way of happening, a mouth.  A landscape

drowsy, full of contradictions and peach trees.

A song, an urn, the ashcan

of imagine.  Glass spittoon, a broken

arm.  The elegance of the letter f.

Green noise of teeth, their

clackclack at night when the maids

are sleeping.


  1. Poem marry me.

My absinthe bride-to-be

bury me in a barn with hair

husks, pollen dust.

Your eyes chasuble blue.

Sugar beet stench around your neck.

Widow cluster. Working

on the curtains, the wedding-ring quilts.

You quit us. And I was glad.

With your sad magnetic face around your aging lace.


  1. Poetry’s two-

lipped, sloe-black

and cobalt.  Spasmodic.

Her bakelite bracelets

jangling. Random patterning

within a simple phenomenal system.

Sipping slivovitz on the terrace, she was

seized with mal de mer though she wasn’t at sea.


  1. Shush.

The windows are waking us

from revisionist dreams. Maize light

raising us from deep sea sleep.

Your words are seaspray,

agave. You are wafer weight

in my lightning mouth.  I burn you

to strawberry.  Leaf-lake.  Glass bird

don’t break.






Simone Muench’s first book The Air Lost in Breathing won the Marianne Moore Prize for Poetry, and her second collection Lampblack & Ash received the 2004 Kathryn A. Morton Prize for Poetry from Sarabande. Her website is





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