Rae Armantrout

Heirloom gourds scalloped
like sea shells—

significant as a bridge
between clouds.

Orange streaks up one side
of the oak

like a shiver,

like fire.


No one should be lonely.
Show your work.

Red blood-blister
berries in the forest.

Writing for the Poetry Foundation, David Woo says that Rae Armantrout’s recent book Finalists
(Wesleyan 2022) “emanates the radiant astonishment of living thought.” Her 2018 book, Wobble, was a
finalist for the National Book Award that year. Her other books with Wesleyan include Partly: New and
Selected Poems
, Just Saying, Money Shot and Versed. In 2010 Versed won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry
and The National Book Critics Circle Award. Retired from UC San Diego where she was professor of
poetry and poetics, she is the current judge of the Yale Younger Poets Prize.