THREE POEMS by Kate Schapira

Poem in an egg

Doctor, thicken
the walls of the future that
etiolate at the nursery
edge, too many
of one kind, not
enough of another
arbiter. When rescue
workers don’t chicken
out, but spread themselves thin,
when the sea comes in, you
are the one who is shaped,
skimmed, scooped,
messaged, modeled, sexed
up, wracked, caught
up in a net
of eelgrass for your own
protection. Some species
build on the ground,
some on sand,
some in the shallow
concern of air.
Some in water.
These are the cells
that divide
devotion, doctoring
the malformed wing
of record, of bitter farewell,
the oil contagion, the orphan.
The company covers
its slick ass with
a paper gown.


Pacific Gyre

hungry current
hurricane exit
eye wrong ocean
process of
vectors plastic
particles distortion
waiting for the day’s
delivery. Look,
Doctor, I don’t really
know how much of
the sea, or my heart,
is sea and how
much is garbage.
That’s your department.


Star chart

Under the sign
of the doctor, the bird
and the boat,
prediction is
a prognosis
triangulated and
fit back
together like
a population.

–Kate Schapira



I try to use writing to sieve out what I am doing and what else I should be doing as a small member of many ecosystems, communities, families, chemical reactions. One of our most damaging human habits is the failure to imagine what our actions—individual or collective, harmful or careful—can lead to or create. I would be pleased if something I wrote led someone else to question, to extrapolate, or to act—to act like they live in the world, in the same world as the rest of the world.


Kate Schapira is the author of TOWN (Factory School, Heretical Texts, 2010) and several chapbooks from Flying Guillotine Press, Cy Gist Press, horse less press, Rope-A-Dope Press and Portable Press at Yo-Yo Labs. She runs the Publicly Complex reading series in Providence, RI.

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