by Douglas Goetsch

The self is a ship in a bottle.
You want to built it when you’re young
but if not, no matter, the self
will be the thing in you that’s sad
when the sun goes down. Ninety
percent of it you’ll never know
but there are worse thing to not know
like the rest of a song
the great Russian novels
or the way home.

SOURCE: “Short Song” appears in Douglas Goetsch‘s collection Nobody’s Hell (Hanging Loose Press, 1999), available at Amazon.com.

IMAGE: “Homage to Magritte” by Enrico Ripamonti. Prints available at pixels.com.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Douglas Goetsch is the author of three books of poems, most recently Nameless Boy (Orchises Press, 2015), and four prizewinning chapbooks. His work has appeared numerous magazines and anthologies, including The New Yorker, The American Scholar and Best American Poetry. He is a recipient of a National Foundation for the Arts Poetry Fellowship and a Pushcart Prize, and is founding editor of Jane Street Press in New York City. His poem “Swimming to New Zealand” will appear in the Silver Birch Press Great Gatsby Anthology (April 2015). Visit him at douglasgoetsch.com.