Readings — From the February 2014 issue

We’re Going to Get Married

Download Pdf
Read Online

By Jeff Dolven, from a collection in progress. Dolven is the author of Speculative Music, published last year by Sarabande.

We’re going to get married, married, she said,
going to get married, me and my sister,
and I don’t care what it looks like, she said.

A sister like mine is harder to find
than a needle lost in the high cactus-desert,
than a hay-colored camel lost in the haystacks.

We mustn’t let go! We’re going to be richer
together than any old rich man, and truer,
true to each other, and damn the beholder:

he gets the needle, right in the eye,
and then she and I will be left free to wander,
wander right through the eye of the needle

ring-fingers first: we’ll meet in the middle,
and there we can linger, sister and sister,
properly married, not lying together

like camel and camel, like nickel and quarter,
like hayfield and haystack and hay-harvest weather,
like mistress and master, beheld and beholder

and the eye that’s so ready to put them together.
What have they ever promised each other?
It just isn’t right: we can do better.

You are currently viewing this article as a guest. If you are a subscriber, please sign in. If you aren't, please subscribe below and get access to the entire Harper's archive for only $45.99/year. Or purchase this issue on your iOS or Android devices for $6.99.

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Download Pdf
Single Page
Share

More from Jeff Dolven:

Readings From the July 2009 issue

The Ironic Cloud

Get access to 165 years of
Harper’s for only $45.99

United States Canada

THE CURRENT ISSUE

September 2015

Weed Whackers

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Tremendous Machine

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

A Goose in a Dress

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Genealogy of Orals

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content
Close

Please enjoy this free article from Harper’s Magazine.