[The problem with sweetness is death. The problem]

The problem with sweetness is death. The problem
with everything is death. There really is no other problem
if you factor everything down, which I was no good at
when studying fractions. They were always using pie
as their example. Rather than thinking about factoring
things down I wondered what kind of pie. And here
I am, broke, barely able to count to fourteen. When
people talk about math they say you’ll need it to balance
your checkbook. What is a checkbook and what,
indeed, is balance? Speaking of sweetness, for a time
I worked in a fudge shop on an island. After a week
the smell of sweetness made me heave, not to mention
the smell of horses; it was an island without cars,
shit everywhere. When I quit, the owner slapped me.

Diane Seuss’s most recent collection, Still Life with Two Dead Peacocks and a Girl (Graywolf Press, 2018), was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for poetry. Four-Legged Girl (Graywolf Press, 2015) was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. frank: sonnets is forthcoming from Graywolf in 2021. Seuss is a 2020 Guggenheim Fellow.