Sweet Song

Sweet song, sweet song,
it is she on the porch,
it is she at the door,
with an off-key ping-Bong,
with a creaky Ding-tonk
at the sad buzzer-bell,
the stale, dwindling bell
with its call of a shrill,
throttled quail, yet
still so damn sweet that
it makes my teeth ache,
that it swells out my soul
as a bronze temple
gong that starts the small deer
in the rushes and rocks
of the echoing hills.
A breath’s great hour of pause
and then once again
like electric frizz
its hard put bing-Bzzz
and concluding bzzz-Pffft,
the last, throat-stuck, dying note
part rusted, half choked
to spring this cushion-sunk sot
to horse and to foot.

Hailey Leithauser

Hailey Leithauser

Hailey Leithauser's books are Swoop(2013), winner of the Poetry Foundation's Emily Dickinson First Book Award and the Towson Prize for Literature, and Saint Worm (2019). She is currently at work on a new manuscript, poems from which have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Agni, the Alaska Quarterly Review, The Birmingham Poetry Review, the Cincinnati Review/, the Gettysburg Review, and other journals.
Hailey Leithauser

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Author: Hailey Leithauser

Hailey Leithauser's books are Swoop (2013), winner of the Poetry Foundation's Emily Dickinson First Book Award and the Towson Prize for Literature, and Saint Worm (2019). She is currently at work on a new manuscript, poems from which have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Agni, the Alaska Quarterly Review, The Birmingham Poetry Review, the Cincinnati Review/, the Gettysburg Review, and other journals.