Cold Work by Cecily Parks

Winner of the 2005 PSA Chapbook Fellowship

Cold Work
by Cecily Parks, selected and introduced by Li-Young Lee.

Edition: 500 copies of the winning books were printed by the Prolific Group and designed by Gabriele Wilson.


The poems in this fine collection live somewhere between an entranced unconscious singing and a very conscious, meticulous investigation of the inner world’s projections onto the outer world.

—Li-Young Lee

Self-Portrait with Field

Wind is seeker when I hide—unfixed,
small-hipped and sere, I am another blade
in disarray, transfixed
by weathering and what it might abrade

of me. I have unnecessaries:
belly fat, a slow way with clothes, a weakness
for bellows and endings. Ending's emissaries
are shy as tigers—I expected nothing less

of happiness; still, I watch what twitches
in orchard margins and under warped floorboards.
I adore our tilting floors and the slim pitch
of stairs you fell down, but I've been home before—

were we to meet like this, I would be stranger
found in a field. Were I loved, I would be braver.

All rights reserved. Reprinted with the permission of the author.

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