Rae Armantrout reads 19 Unpublished Poems

I went to hear Fanny Howe read at Zinc Bar last year on a Sunday in December and had the added pleasure of hearing the Pulitzer Prize winning poet, Rae Armantrout, read unpublished poems that will soon appear in a new book called Conjure. “Pinocchio,” which you can read below, has already been published by the Poetry Foundation so before you listen, you can read and prepare for this poet’s steady flow of title to story that is full of surprises—yes, even beauty—and humor too. Enjoy.


Strand. String.
In this dream,

the paths cross
and cross again.

They are spelling
a real boy

out of repetition.

Each one
is the one

real boy.

Each knows
he must be

about this, but

he can’t feel

The fish
and the fisherman,

the pilot,
the princess,

the fireman and
the ones on fire.

A link to the Poetry Foundation:


Two of Rae Armantrout’s most recent books, Partly and Wobble, are published by Weslyan University Press. You can check them out here:


Rae Armantrout

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