Editor’s Choice – Two Poems by Curt Eriksen

Leave a comment

October 31, 2011 by The Citron Review

by Curt Eriksen


To have
just the time
and the good luck
to sit and watch
all one day
some thing
that never

That’s how
I remember
and the hands
of the old Turk
drooling saliva
and a little
life yet.



She grips the headboard and
braces against his thrusting,
abandoning her mind the way
she surrendered her soul

not an hour ago to the guy
who bought her a hamburger
with an extra large order of fries,
encouraging her to eat, eat, eat

cause you never know when
you’re gonna be hungry again.



Curt Ericksen’s poems penetrated the inner world with well crafted and compacted language. I still remember reading Curt’s poetry on my phone as I walked down to the beach on a sunny afternoon. His work immediately inspired me to write. His poetry was like a match lighting the stove on a cold morning … I needed his poetry. His work reminded me why I spent thousands on a MFA when there’s not a slight chance it will pay off. Curt’s poem “Patience” is just two sentences, but in those two lines I feel what the narrator feels as if I were in Morocco watching the “old Turk.” I immediately was lost in “the good luck / to sit and watch / all one day / some thing / that never / moves.” Artist Paul Cezanne once said, “Here, on the river’s verge, I could be busy for months without changing my place, simply leaning a little more to right or left.” Curt’s line connected to Cezanne’s words and the way an artist takes in the world, studies it, and shapes it into a new work of art. Curt’s poem “Patience” hooked me as a reader and as an editor with the way he couched the observation made in the second line with the lens of having the “good luck” to be an observer with the time to see another person so completely. The second line: “That’s how / I remember / Morocco / and the hands / of the old Turk / drooling saliva / and a little / life yet” gives me a sharp picture of suffering in Morocco, but leaves me with a thread of hope in the last few words. Curt manages to pack in the intrigue of mentioning Morocco with a vision of suffering and a glimmer of hope. This type of tension in such a short space made it easy to say “yes” to his work.

Even a year after accepting Curt’s work for our Fall 2010 issue, I find that it still resonates with me. In Curt’s poem “Hunger” I was struck by the last two lines and how starkly it captures the essence of hunger in its most basic and instinctual form. While hunger starts out like a typical poem about sex, it reaches much deeper, easing down in with simple language. It doesn’t try to be grand, doesn’t try to entertain me with choice words that sound poetic, but the language resonates with meaning and plants itself in my memory because it is so familiar. I am inclined to say “yes” to sex, but I’m searching for something much deeper.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


🍋10th Anniversary

Fall 2019 IssueSeptember 23rd, 2019
Cheers to 10 great years!

🍋 Instagram

Fiction Editor JR Walsh luxuriates in micros shaken and most definitely stirred. https://citronreview.com/2019/09/23/notes-on-the-micro-fiction-selections/ #amreading #microfiction
Grab a two foot scrap of wood and step up to home plate with Ronald Hartley in "Batting Stones." https://citronreview.com/2019/09/23/batting-stones/ Hartley's stories have been published by Sky Island Journal, Literary Juice, After the Pause, Gravel Magazine and Mobius: The Journal for Social Change. #amreading #flashfiction
We're reading for our Winter Issue, but a deadline is coming soon. Please consider submitting your best poetry, flash, and micros before December 1. Our editors will continue reading creative nonfiction through the new year, but we'd love to see your excellent work even sooner. https://citronreview.com/submission/ #TheCitronReview #onlinejournal #briefliterature #celebratingtheshortform #cheersto10years #Citron10 #callforsubmissions #poetry #cnf #fiction
Marissa Hoffman's creative nonfiction covers the directions that a life may take in "A Route Plan From Dad to Dad." https://citronreview.com/2019/09/23/a-route-plan-from-dad-to-dad/ #amreading #flashcnf Marissa Hoffman has published FlashBack Fiction, Bending Genres, and The Drabble. She is a fiction reader for Atticus Review.
Managing Editor Eric Steineger illuminates ten years of Citron Poetry. https://citronreview.com/2019/09/23/notes-on-the-poetry-selections-12/
When raising children is like "Fighting with God," Jennifer Woodworth dives into each poetic moment. https://citronreview.com/2019/09/23/fighting-with-god/ Jennifer Woodworth is the author of the chapbook, How I Kiss Her Turning Head (Monkey Puzzle Press.) Her writing has appeared in Bending Genres Journal, The Eastern Iowa Review, Star 82 Review, among others. Her blog is fishclamor.com. #amreading #poetry

Enter your email address to follow us and receive notifications of new issues by email.

%d bloggers like this: