About the Whiteness of the Whale
by Gwendolyn Jensen Gwendolyn Jensen

The print and online journals where poems by Gwendolyn Jensen have appeared include Amethyst Arsenic, Beloit Poetry Journal, The Comstock Review, Harvard Review, The Malahat Review, Measure, Nashville Review, Salamander, Sanskrit, and Valparaiso Poetry Review.

After spending many years in academia, Gwendolyn retired from the presidency of Wilson College in 2001. She now lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts, with her husband and serves as a board member of Off the Grid Press, a press for poets over sixty. Birthright, her first book, was published by Birch Brook Press in a letterpress edition (with a second printing in 2012).

A lamb, a combed white bear, an albatross,
driven snow, warm milk, an old man's sweat,
a string of pearls, a kitten's purr, the gloss
on drifted wood, cream cheese on a baguette,

white marriages, white wedding dresses, mourning
clothes, papal robes, the Ku Klux Klan,
white-collar workers, summer's morning,
white noise, whitewash, white paper, white man,

lacquered demons known from birth,
pallid spirits of the gone, light
discarded skin of snakes, paper white
and weightless, open eyed and flung to earth.

What do you think? Please send us your comments, including the name of the work you are commenting on.
Permalink to the Amarillo Bay issue containing this work.