Its Raining in Syracuse: the Life I Always Wanted

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Its raining in Syracuse, New York—a warm rain for late October, as if it arrived from Carolina by mistake. The world smells like dying leaves and smoky earth. Its a good day for anonymous lovers—we can at last see beauty in strangers across the rainy parking lots. Yes, Whitman, I hear you in a moist [...]

Steve with Jacket over his head

Rachmaninoff, Ding Dong, Blues…

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“Good morning blues, blues how do you do?” Blues got in this morning by bus—hung out formerly in archetypal paradise. I’m doin’ alright, good morning, how are you? Man says: “Well I lay down last night, turnin’ from side to side…” Blues says: “Ding Dong. Here’s your coffin. Shall I leave it here on the [...]

Book Cover of "Only Bread, Only Light" by Steve Kuusisto

In another minute…

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In another minute I’m washing apples—lyric present—in another minute. In another minute the rags and disguises of me are washed away as though psyche was nothing more than sand—in another minute— common sense, another, geese headed north, words stacked like fire wood, another minute I wash apples—and summer has grown old but not like a [...]

Steve with Jacket over his head

Someone Has to Sing

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Someone has to sing and it might as well be me. I twist my head off and put it in a tub. Rain falls on the head as it opens and closes my mouth. I guess you could say sometimes the journey visits you. The head, mine, sings I wasn’t satisfied with anything less than [...]

Steve with Jacket over his head

Choking Down Your Frog

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Some mornings words are mine, the way a costume really fits an opera singer—the amused buttons shine as objects do, the little Schopenhauer eyelets of the tunic take the words in. And Lordy! My voice is big, at least for a minute. This is not Romanticism but the business of ordinary clothing. All word-buttons are [...]


Explore the Planet

Steve Kuusisto's Books on

Letters to Borges

Planet of the Blind

Only Bread, Only Light

Eavesdropping: A Memoir of Blindness and Listening

The Poet's Notebook

Do Not Interrupt: A Playful Take on the Art of Conversation