The American Journal of Poetry
"Strong Rx Medicine"®


Stephanie Rogers

Wedding Day


With this ring I wed thee
            to the radiator’s breath, the pencil cup. I wed thee
to my ears, tulips
twirling through my hair, electric
                                       cords and sparking. To the fallen
button pressed against my lips, I wed thee,
with this ring, and with this ring
                                                  I wed thee to the plucked
weed I entwine with veins. I wed thee to my cheeksmoothed
hair, the rinsed-out mouth,
                   my windshield-wiped and foaming
smile. With this ring
I wed thee to my faults, my broken
                                               toe, and to the backyard pit
flaming your name. How I wed thee to the gathered.
How I never want you dead. One too many
                                                    family gravestones deck
the cemetery, so I wed thee to my taken, my accumulated
change. I wed thee to the notes
                               you leave—goodbye. I dress my dress
in kerosene. And light.




STEPHANIE ROGERS grew up in Middletown, Ohio and now lives in New York City. She was educated at The Ohio State University, the University of Cincinnati, and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in journals such as Ploughshares, Cincinnati Review, Pleiades, Ninth Letter, Copper Nickel, and New Ohio Review, as well as the Best New Poets anthology. Saturnalia Books published her first collection of poems, Plucking the Stinger, in October 2016.



Previous | Next