After the one that sings, and after the one
that can make up poems of a kind right on the spot;
after a girl who didn't . . . walk very well,
took five minutes to get from her seat to the stage
then read one poem with hardly any words in it
and halted the whole way back in a staggering silence;
after the bald one's rhymes about this teeth;
a woman got up whose poems won't write down,
it's all in the way the voices in her come out.

We went to a medium once, and a woman locked
in a trance let a dead man come inside her and talk.
She held herself like . . . a woman being a man.
That's what it was at the open stage poetry reading,
and I left without talking, I hadn't come expecting it.
What could I have told her, I think it's a dead man?
It wasn't something I wanted to get that close to.
I could never do it myself, let a dead man come in-
or would it be, into me, a dead woman that would come?