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By Brenda Hillman

   —kept losing self control
    but how could one lose the self
 after reading so much literary theory?
The shorter "i" stood under the cork trees,
     the taller "I" remained rather passive;
 the brendas were angry at the greed, angry
that the trees would die, had lost interest
 in the posturing of the privileged,
   the gaps between can't & won't…
   Stood outside the gate of permissible
       sound & the wind came soughing
through the doubt debris
(soughing comes from swāgh—to resound…
echo actually comes from this also—)
  we thought of old Hegel across
the sea—the Weltgeist—& clouds
went by like the bones of a Kleenex…
        it's too late for countries
but it's not too late for trees…
  & the wind kept soughing
  with its sound sash, wind with
        its sound sash,    increasing
bold wind with its sound sash,
            increasing bold—

"Angrily Standing Outside in the Wind" from Extra Hidden Life, among the Days © 2018 by Brenda Hillman.  Published by permission of Wesleyan University Press. Used by permission. 

  • Nature
  • Social Commentaries

Poet Bio

Brenda Hillman
Brenda Hillman was born in Tucson, Arizona, and attended Pomona College, where she received a bachelor’s degree, followed by the University of Iowa, where she earned an MFA. She has been a member of the faculty at St. Mary’s College in Moraga, California, since 1984. She once told Contemporary Authors: "I am interested in the presence of spirit in matter and in how to have joy in a divided universe—that's what my poetry is mainly about. My tools are irony, the image, the broken narrative, and an intensely personal voice." See More By This Poet

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