Denise Duhamel

Denise Duhamel’s most recent book of poetry Blowout (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2013) was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her other books include Ka-Ching! (Pittsburgh, 2009), Two and Two (Pittsburgh, 2005), Queen for a Day: Selected and New Poems (Pittsburgh, 2001), The Star-Spangled Banner (winner of the Crab Orchard Award, SIU Press, 1999) and Kinky (Orchises Press, 1997). She is a professor at Florida International University in Miami.

Reproduction Pantoum
poetry - an excerpt

In the beginning was the sea,
all life-forms growing in the ocean.
In the beginning was the moon,
no gestation, no sperm, just tides—

all life-forms growing in the ocean,
a womb itself, primordial and marine.
No gestation, no sperm, just tides
of creatures born from embryos 

in a sea’s womb, primordial and marine.
In the beginning, before the beginning
of creatures born from embryos, 
was a meteor, the moon already there

in the beginning. Before the beginning
of the solar system was the Milky Way,
which Aristotle praised in Meteoroligica. 
Before the universe itself—what?

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