M.A. Vizsolyi

Forbidden Words

                       “the weight of a hollow feather”

“well then carry me into the kitchen & be
sure to watch my head i wish to have a spot
of tea as the british say & drink it in the air”

                       “but i cannot hold you up for too long”

“though i am the weight of a hollow feather
no what rubbish under rubble sometimes
you say”

               Marie laughed

                       “will you drop your feet”

“nope i like it up here near your books this
one on roofing have you read it”

                       “i did”

“why would you read it”

                       “in case of a leak”

“& what about this one called ‘forbidden


“so which words are forbidden”

                       “i remember the word feeling was


“feeling like i am feeling blue or i am feeling
the common touch of a commoner in a
commonplace common place”

                       “yes something like that”

“& another word”


“yes i think umm should be stricken from the
speech of anyone who is to call herself a
speaker i detest the phrase i once had a
teacher who said umm so often i began to
keep track by the end of a one & a half hour
class she had said umm 223 times & what’s
more we worked silently for over an hour”

                       “you really are getting quite heavy”

“one more word & then i’ll come down”


“freedom why freedom it makes me think of
red & blue chariots driven by a brave horse-
woman thick with long black hair when she
passes by she screams the word freedom &
waves to me maybe i saw her once as a girl
no i rather like freedom even the sound like
a sea pond or a key room or a zebra-broom

                       “Marie please”

“oh alright”


M.A. Vizsolyi is the author of The Lamp with Wings: love sonnets (HarperPerennial) winner of the National Poetry Series. He is also the author of the chapbooks, Notes on Melancholia (Monk Books) and The Case of Jane: a verse play (500places press). Recent work can be found in The New Orleans Review, Pleiades, Ploughshares, and Gulf Coast. He teaches writing at Goddard College and edits the online journal Paperbag.

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