A poem from the book Overpass

Good Housekeeping

Somewhere a shelf of labeled containers
containing formalin and bits of flesh.
Somewhere a book waterlogs in a tub
while three-personed cells batter a body.
Aggressive. Invasive. Metastatic.
Somewhere a container labeled right breast

flanked by four others. Lymph node, sentinel
one. Sentinel two. Axillary tail. Breast skin.
Somewhere Overpass Girl bruises, blows, burns.
Somewhere retreats. Somewhere folds in. Somewhere

enthralled, ravished, betrothed.

Steve Davenport is the author of two poetry collections: Overpass (Arsenic Lobster/Misty Publications, 2012) and Uncontainable Noise (Pavement Saw Press, 2006). The terrain of Overpass is the Illinois floodplain across the river from St. Louis; the figure who hovers above it all is a woman diagnosed with breast cancer named Overpass Girl. Read a companion essay to Overpass, “No Apology for Happiness.” Listen to Illinois poet David Wright read the poem “Popular Science” also from Overpass.

Davenport’s poems, stories, and essays have been anthologized, reprinted, and published in scores of literary magazines both on-line and in print. A story in The Southern Review received a 2011 Pushcart Prize Special Mention. His Murder on Gasoline Lake, published in Black Warrior Review and later as a chapbook by New American Press, is listed as Notable in Best American Essays 2007. He has a website: Collected Works of Gasoline Lake.


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