The American Journal of Poetry
"Strong Rx Medicine"®


Rae Armantrout



Human interest:

“Patrolling the border
on four legs.”


On a plane’s silent screen
a clothed moose and baboon
visit an aquarium
where the fish are nude
albeit fluorescent pink.

This film’s meant to help kids
identify rare animals
or it’s meant
to normalize captivity.

But the glass breaks
and the couple is swept out
onto the street
where a grave koala
addresses survivors
from a mound of wreckage.


Is this a joke?

My account is frozen
And I wake up cold.


of all sizes
on his shirt, a parrot
on his arm, a man shuffles
into a supermarket



Rae Armantrout

Cross Over


Clang of chimes; bright leaves
shiver with delight.

Where the wires cross --
insights. I want more.

A creek is torn
by rocks

and the wind sends notes
this way and back.

Start in the middle

and count




RAE ARMANTROUT's most recent books are Partly: New and Selected Poems (Wesleyan, 2016) and Entanglements, a chapbook of poems in conversation with physics (Wesleyan, 2017.) A new collection, Wobble, is forthcoming from Wesleyan in 2018. Recently retired from UC San Diego, Armantrout is currently living in the Seattle area.



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