Franz Wright is an American poet.
Wright graduated from Oberlin College in 1977. He and his father James Wright are the only parent/child pair to have won the Pulitzer Prize in the same category.
Wheeling Motel (Knopf, 2009), had selections put to music for the record "Readings from Wheeling Motel". Wright stepped down as the Jacob Ziskind Visiting Poet-in-Residence at Brandeis University in May 2009. Wright wrote the lyrics to and performs on the Clem Snide song "Encounter at 3AM" on the album Hungry Bird (released in February 2009). His most recent book, is Kindertotenwald (Knopf 2011), a collection of sixty-five prose poems ... more »
Click here to add this poet to your My Favorite Poets.
Franz Wright Poems
You do look a little ill. But we can do something about that, now. Can’t we. The fact is you’re a shocking wreck.
Is there a single thing in nature that can approach in mystery the absolute uniqueness of any human face, first, then its transformation from childhood to old age—
Incomprehensible fate that sentenced my father to my mother. I can’t blame him, I would have left the raving bitch myself, and would do so many many times in years to come.
If I stare into it long enough, the point comes when I don’t know what it’s called, a condition in which lacerations are liable to occur
You are riding the bus again burrowing into the blackness of Interstate 80, the sole passenger with an overhead light on.
Pure gaze, you are lightning beyond the last trees and you are the last trees’ past, branching green lightning
Morning arrives unannounced by limousine: the tall emaciated chairman
Thoughts of a Solitary Farmhouse
And not to feel bad about dying. Not to take it so personally— it is only the force we exert all our lives
It’s true I never write, but I would gladly die with you. Gladly lower myself down alone with you into the enormous mouth that waits, beyond youth, beyond every instant of ecstasy, remember:
Say I had no choice, this weightless finger touched my tongue and told me to, it taught me; when kinder and more subtle methods failed, it put a gun to my head
Some fish for words from shore while others, lacking in such contemplative tact, like to go wading in up to their chins through a torrent of bone-freezing diamond, knife raised, to freeze-frame incarnadine and then bid it as with hermetic wand flow on again, ferociously, transparently, name writ in river.
The vast waters flow past its back yard. You can purchase a six-pack in bars! Tammy Wynette's on the marquee a block down. It's twenty-five years ago:
Entry in an Unknown Hand
And still nothing happens. I am not arrested. By sonic inexplicable oversight nobody jeers when I walk down the street. I have been allowed to go on living in this
From the third floor window you watch the mailman’s slow progress through the blowing snow. As he goes from door to door
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(31 May 1819 - 26 March 1892)
(31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821)
You do look a little ill.
But we can do something about that, now.
The fact is you’re a shocking wreck.
Do you hear me.
You aren’t all alone.
And you could use some help today, packing in the
dark, boarding buses north, putting the seat back and
grinning with terror flowing over your legs through
your fingers and hair . . .
I was always waiting, always here.
Know anyone else who can say that.
My advice to you is think of her for what she is:
one more name cut in the scar of your ...