Roger Reeves


oger Reeves's poems have appeared in journals such as Poetry, Ploughshares, American Poetry Review, Boston Review, and Tin House, among others. Kim Addonizio selected “Kletic of Walt Whitman” for the Best New Poets 2009 anthology. He was awarded a 2013 NEA Fellowship, Ruth Lilly Fellowship by the Poetry Foundation in 2008, two Bread Loaf Scholarships, an Alberta H. Walker Scholarship from the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, and two Cave Canem Fellowships. He earned his PhD the University of Texas-Austin and is currently an assistant professor of poetry at the University of Illinois, Chicago. His first book is King Me (Copper Canyon Press, 2013). Source

Someday I'll Love Roger Reeves

After Frank O'Hara 


Until then, let us have our gods and short prayers. Our obligations.

Our thighbone connected to our knee bone.


Our dissections and our swans. Our legs gashed

upon a barbwire fence and our heels tucked behind a lover’s knees.

Let us have a stalk of sugarcane to suck


and another to tear our backs with what it knows of disaster

and a tadpole’s folly. Let us have mistakes


and fish willing to come to a bell rung across a body of water.

Let us have our drawbridges and our moats. Our heavens

no higher than a pile of dried leaves. Let us have irrelevance


and a scalpel. A dislocated ankle and three more miles to run.

A plastic bottle to hold nothing but last names and a chill.


If none of this will be remembered, then let us keep speaking

with tongues light as screen doors clapping shut

on a child’s fingers. For this is love. To press


one frame against another

and when something like a finger is found between this pressing,


to press nevertheless. For this is our obligation.

Let us forget our obligations. For this is love.

Let us forget our love. Our eyelids’ need for beginnings


and ends and blood. Our coils of hunger

that turn another into dried honey on our hands.


And what if this goes on forever—our ours?

Our drafts and fragments? Our blizzards and our cancers?

Then let us. Then, let us hold each other toward heaven


and forget that we were once made of flesh,

that this is the fall our gods refuse to clean with fire or water.





Literary Movements:


Anthology Years:



Joy & Praise

Love & Relationships

Literary Devices:

After Poems

A poem where the form, theme, subject, style, or line(s) is inspired by the work another poet.


a figure of speech in which words repeat at the beginning of successive clauses, phrases, or sentences


visually descriptive or figurative language, especially in a literary work