Terese Svoboda

The Day After the Wedding

Too new, too new, the twisty-ties between in-laws.
The set­ter pre­tends to bark at the plas­tic blown big
by cel­e­bra­tion, scuff­ing between rooms and wives.
His cheeks strain. How to close the bag? I ruin

a television’s worth of answers between scuffs.
Don’t look now, I com­mand. “I do” is too late

to halve feel­ings a room away, some oth­er relative’s.
The plas­tic rears in the wind, the dog slinks to his place,
as neutered as ever. I bask in the afternoon
of emo­tion. Sticks will be thrown.



Her spir­it zipped, Mom took on
a pro­noun. Hey, sighed us to it,
the day for us is young.

Groomed mon­key-best, newly
dud­ded with dirt, she leaves
sor­row in pock­ets that can’t

be turned out–and there’s the idiot
in the mouth too. A fly approaches
the mound and Voila! gets through.

Love coughs Get the Robitussin.
We’re not the last in the wheelbarrow
but her spir­it runs thin as voile,

white in the wind, the dog
back­ing away, down tail.
We’re vio­lins, we’re soft tissue,

what one lymph says to another.
She can’t be over­heard or overjoyed.
A mul­lah next door, that wail, no other.


Terese Svoboda has poems forth­com­ing in Yale Review and Diagram. A Selected will be pub­lished in 2015.