Biography of Connie Wanek
Connie Wanek is an American poet.
She was born in Madison, Wisconsin, and grew up in Las Cruces, New Mexico. In 1989 she moved with her family to Duluth, Minnesota where she now lives.
Her work appeared in Poetry, The Atlantic Monthly, The Virginia Quarterly Review, Quarterly West, Poetry East, Prairie Schooner and Missouri Review.
She has published three books of poetry, and served as co-editor of the comprehensive historical anthology of Minnesota women poets, called To Sing Along the Way (New Rivers Press, 2006). Ted Kooser, Poet Laureate of the United States (2004–2006), named her a Witter Bynner Fellow of the Library of Congress for 2006.
Willow Poetry Prize
Jane Kenyon Poetry Prize.
2006 Witter Bynner Fellowship of the Library of Congress by United States Poet Laureate Ted Kooser.
2009 George Morrison Artist of the Year
Connie Wanek's Works:
"Leftovers", Narrative, Winter 2008
"Hartley Field". Poetry. August 2001.
"Lipstick". The Atlantic Monthly. November 2004.
Hartley Field: poems. Holy Cow! Press
Bonfire: poems. New Rivers Press. 1997
On Speaking Terms. Copper Canyon Press
Joyce Sutphen, Thom Tammaro, Connie Wanek, ed. (2006). To Sing Along the Way: Minnesota Women Poets from Pre-Territorial Days to the Present. New Rivers Press
Billy Collins, ed. (2003). Poetry 180: a turning back to poetry. Random House Trade Paperbacks
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Connie Wanek Poems
Butter Butter, like love, seems common enough
In the democracy of daisies every blossom has one vote. The question on the ballot is Does he love me?
Each picture is heartbreakingly banal, a kitten and a ball of yarn, a dog and bone. The paper is cheap, easily torn.
I don't know if we're in the beginning or in the final stage. -- Tomas Tranströmer
There is menace in its relentless course, round and round, describing an ellipsoid, an airy prison in which a young girl
The Coin Behind Your Ear
Before you knew you owned it it was gone, stolen, and you were a fool. How you never felt it is the wonder, heavy and thick,
She leaned over the sink her weight on her toes and applied lipstick in quick certain strokes
The wind cooled as it crossed the open pond and drove little waves toward us, brisk, purposeful waves that vanished at our feet, such energy
We used to play, long before we bought real houses. A roll of the dice could send a girl to jail. The money was pink, blue, gold as well as green, and we could own a whole railroad
Mittens are drying on the radiator, boots nearby, one on its side. Like some monstrous segmented insect the radiator elongates under the window.
A flower needs to be this size to conceal the winter window, and this color, the red of a Fiat with the top down,
The Coin Behind Your Ear
Before you knew you owned it
it was gone, stolen, and you were a fool.
How you never felt it is the wonder,
heavy and thick,
lodged deep in your hair like a burr.
You still see the smile of the magician
as he turned the coin in his long fingers,
which had so disturbed your ear
with their caress. You watched him