Poems and Texts

“Landscape with Greyhound and Greasewood” by Lynn Melnick

Landscape with Greyhound and Greasewood

Mostly men keep singing
while dark blood collects where I open

and I line my polka dot panties with rest stop receipts.

I think probably we’ll pause in Barstow to continue
these lyrics

but I’m no standard:

I fold over to smell myself.

Route 66 to Las Vegas.
Perfect for a child and also America

loves the promise of a long haul.

I pull the tab from a small can of apple juice:

I’m cared for.
The man next to me puts his hand on my thigh.

He gets the kind of girl I am,
new leaves shiny with oil, flammable.

Come on.

Know better. Somebody,
know better.

Lynn Melnick

Lynn Melnick is the author of the poetry collections Landscape with Sex and Violence (2017) and If I Should Say I Have Hope (2012), both with YesYes Books, and the co-editor of Please Excuse This Poem: 100 Poets for the Next Generation (Viking, 2015). Her poetry has appeared in APR, The New Republic, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, A Public Space, and elsewhere, and she has written essays and book reviews for Boston Review, LA Review of Books, and Poetry Daily, among others. A 2017-2018 fellow at the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers, she also teaches poetry at the 92Y and serves on the Executive Board of VIDA: Women in Literary Arts. Born in Indianapolis, she grew up in Los Angeles and currently lives in Brooklyn.

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