Maybe poems are made of breath, the way water,
cajoled to boil, says, This is my soul, freed.”

—  Dean Young in an excerpt from Scarecrow on Fire

painting by Bill Bate

“Do you think the dictionary ever says to itself
I’ve got these words that mean completely
different things inside myself
and it’s tearing me apart?”
— Dean Young in an excerpt from “Selected Recent and New Errors
“I was satisfied with haiku until I met you,
jar of octopus, cuckoo’s cry, 5-7-5,
but now I want a Russian novel,
a 50-page description of you sleeping,
another 75 of what you think staring out
a window.”
— Dean Young, excerpt from “Changing Genres”