About Changes Review

Go Back

Two Sonnets by Paul Legault



Go On

Tornadoes can appear out of nowhere.
In that way they are not unlike beauty.
I lost your fig leaf. I can’t put it back.
Eden means you didn’t know you were there.
What can you do with a bucket of rocks?
Throw them like a party at a window.
I’m a fag with a plan. Who’s danger? Us.
My wife is nature. My husband is time.
She doesn’t have a good phoneside manner.
He happens to always be happening.
There used to be trees that you could live in.
Now just to love is to live in protest.
The best winds smell like faraway places.
Why is life fast? So you can catch a breeze.




Us Islands

Icarus wasn’t not running away.
Flying is what you do to leave a home.
No one ever said you shouldn’t have wings.
You just woke up from a fire a bird
that was a bird once. You just crossed the sea
and the wall they built between life & death.
They came to take over all us islands.
I am afraid of what they want with the dead.
You close and you open. You hold the door.
You’re like a wave before it’s been broken.
You’re like a tower before it’s been stormed.
Clouds roll into town, invisible wheels
under them, on a wind full of atoms.
Take covers. Rain doesn’t wait on a man.




Paul Legault is the author of, most recently, The Tower (Coach House Books, 2020). His previous books include The Madeleine Poems (Omnidawn, 2010), The Other Poems (Fence, 2011), The Emily Dickinson Reader: An English-to-English Translation of the Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson (McSweeney’s, 2012), Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror 2 (Fence, 2016), and Lunch Poems 2 (Spork, 2018). He also co-edited The Sonnets: Translating and Rewriting Shakespeare (Nightboat, 2012). www.theotherpaul.com

Thumbnail: René Magritte