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Kimberly Lyons reads from Capella

Kimberly Lyons was in NYC visiting for a week, and I heard she would be at the Zinc Bar reading from her new book, Capella. I’ve enjoyed Kim’s poetry and prose over the years, and was really looking forward to her reading. In fact, at one point a few years ago, I thought I might be in Chicago, and had planned on recording her there in the Windy City, the town of her birth. But here she was. And is.

I’ve taken the liberty of typing out three poems from Capella. In Indiana and Severed are in the middle of the book, the ones you would mostly likely see if you just opened it. Projective is a poem that Kim reads in the Vimeo below. It’s a thoroughly good poem and it will double your pleasure to read along. Enjoy.


Old buttons piled inside a bottle labeled
Herring Fillets
remind me of bones.
Of vertebrate or teeth.
As though the whole of the
sweater floated away
from a sparkling metal gray closure.
Were the skin thin as silk
and all the history of clothing
the red thread that remains
wound through the opening
severed from the artifact
it was.

In Indiana

In Indiana we wandered
in a car spattered with rain
under the sun a dot of milk
the cottony cloud
transcribes with thread
and disguises with mud
sundown in green waves.
Indiana is covered with a darkness
to transit huddle in a capsule
as we approach a silver
rimmed opening
kind of like a horn.


I think: allow words to follow breath as Olson says.
Yet each expelled breath becomes lost.
An invisible stream in air.
I imagine an eel sliding past
mossy rocks and a coral.
Coiling out of sight
indrawn instantly loses itself.
A wave overtaken by more forceful currents
not even noticed
as things from the deep become apparent.
An old yellow gym shoe brimming with water
lies in the sand a sodden ship.
If my body were a pirate’s chest
A frosted castle in a tank.
Red and gold fish with Japanese names
words flicker and flow past.
I don’t think I had ten breaths in the past minutes.
I can’t track their errant lengthy bodies.
One more time I will try to pin thought
to their vanishing tails.


Capella is distributed by SPD. You can check them out here:


and here:


Kim Lyons

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