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Ted Kooser

American Life in Poetry: Marriage

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Though most of us are not formally known as diplomats, many of us learn to be experts at domestic diplomacy, and the sorts of complex negotiations we find ourselves in can require a lot of patience. Here's Dan Gerber, who lives in California, showing us some of that patience.

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Marriage

When you are angry it's your gentle self

I love until that's who you are.

In any case, I can't love this anger any more

than I can warm my heart with ice.

I go on loving your smile

till it finds its way back to your face.

American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation (www.poetryfoundation.org), publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Poem copyright ©2001 by Kathryn Stripling Byer from her most recent book of poems, Southern Fictions, Jacar Press, 2011. Descent, her new collection, is forthcoming from LSU Press. Reprinted by permission of Kathryn Stripling Byer and the publisher. The introduction's author, Ted Kooser, served as United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 2004-2006. We do not accept unsolicited manuscripts.

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