Beth Ann Fennelly – Poem Not to Be Read at Your Wedding

You ask me for a poem about love
in place of a wedding present, trying to save me
money. For three nights I’ve lain
under the glow-in-the-dark-stars I’ve stuck to the ceiling
over my bed. I’ve listened to the songs
of the galaxy. Well, Carmen, I would rather
give you your third set of steak knives
than tell you what I know. Let me find you
some other, store-bought present. Don’t
make me warn you of stars, how they see us
from that distance as miniature and breakable
from the bride who tops the wedding cake
to the Mary on Pinto dashboards
holding her ripe, red heart in her hands.

from Open House: Poems by Beth Ann Fennelly
chosen by Adrienne Rich for The Best American Poetry 1996

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