I love this poem from a recent issue of NER. The pace of the line breaks and stanzas is riveting. And the blurring of tenderness and violence, love and murder is very well done. Reading the contributor's notes, it looks like the two poems in this issue are this poet's first published poems. Pretty cool, huh?
Solution to an Outdated Crossword
Emotional violence is
my favorite kind of violence.
After all, the heart is
the bloodiest organ.
Desire is the tender cup
behind her kneecap.
Love is something else.
It is not the game, maybe,
but the dice, loaded,
and the mugging that follows.
You will stab yourself between the ribs.
You will dislocate a tender kneecap.
Sometimes, you will just have to set out down a dirt road
alone in the dark with a rifle.
One night my father's father was reincarnated
as a jack-o'-lantern.
A love of mine carved out his eyes.
I scooped the orange mess from his skull.
We lit a candle together
and were happy for a night.
But don't be fooled.
The solution to every murder mystery is . . .
a good question. Actually, that is what love is.
It is the solution to every murder mystery.
-- Henry Kearney IV