“The Connection.” A Poem by Jana Prikryl

From Her New Collection, Midwood

August 11, 2022  By Jana Prikryl

You, blond, a backstop behind me in line
at the deli where the Japanese woman, her fingertips
twigs, harried, named the three kinds
of gefilte fish, none very convincing but I went
for so-called salmon while you went on
about those people, Mideasterners, their demerits you felt
I wasn’t seeing a camera like a tilted cheval
on us and I remember my only possible reply
was turning the back of my head
to its silver trembling element
and then I was running for the train to Berlin
failing to make the connection eight times within
the one miss because you relive that kind of trouble
in motion and as this late interview shows
even had I been kinder to my first rush of love
for you it would’ve come to nothing, our destination


midwood_jana prikryl

Jana Prikryl
Jana Prikryl
Jana Prikryl is the author of The After Party, which was one of The New York Times’ Best Poetry Books of the Year. Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The London Review of Books, The Paris Review, and The New York Review of Books, where she is a senior editor and the poetry editor.

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