All Beggars Would Ride

for Jane Hirshfield

Last night the beautiful horses of my boyhood galloped again

into my dream.  I especially love the sleek black mare
with the white star between her eyes,

and remember her grace as she’d trot
across the pasture when I stretched my arm over the fence –

corn husks, an apple core, such small things, such large joy.
I’ve often wished I had a heart like that.

Ah, says my mother-in-law, if wishes were horses . . .

David Bottoms

David Bottoms

David Bottoms is the Amos Distinguished Chair in English Letters at Georgia State University. The author of eight books of poems, two novels, and a book of essays and interviews, his poems have appeared widely in magazines such as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Harper's, Poetry, and The Paris Review, as well as in sixty anthologies and textbooks.

For twelve years the Poet Laureate of Georgia, he has received the Frederick Bock Prize and the Levinson Prize, both from Poetry magazine, an Ingram Merrill Award, an Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He lives with his wife and daughter in Atlanta, and his new book of poems, Otherworld, Underworld, Prayer Porch, will be released by Copper Canyon Press in 2018.
David Bottoms

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Author: David Bottoms

David Bottoms is the Amos Distinguished Chair in English Letters at Georgia State University. The author of eight books of poems, two novels, and a book of essays and interviews, his poems have appeared widely in magazines such as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Harper's, Poetry, and The Paris Review, as well as in sixty anthologies and textbooks. For twelve years the Poet Laureate of Georgia, he has received the Frederick Bock Prize and the Levinson Prize, both from Poetry magazine, an Ingram Merrill Award, an Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He lives with his wife and daughter in Atlanta, and his new book of poems, Otherworld, Underworld, Prayer Porch, will be released by Copper Canyon Press in 2018.