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Betsey Cullen, one poem


Elegy for Erik

In a squall, I'd want you

at the helm, your eye

on map and compass. I’d want

you filleting the trout, you

as my surgeon-on-call,

your cochlear implant for my deaf child.

I’d downplay your fault finding, pursed lips,

all that Norwegian winter in you

that brooked no dissent, heard no gray.

I’d circle back, follow your tracks

up over Besseggen down to Gjendesheim,

admire your smile, your firm grip.

I’d want to hear tell

how Vikings drank

from skulls,

how, in order to skal properly

I must look you in the eye,

drink, then lower my glass

to the third button.

 

Betsey Cullen hails from Pennsylvania and teaches poetry at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Delaware. A Pennsylvania Poetry Society prize winner, her work has been published in the Broadkill Review and anthologies edited by Amy Huffman, Diane Lockward, Peter Murphy and others. In 2015 her collection, Our Place in Line, won Tiger’s Eye Press’ Chapbook Competition.


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