David Gewanter


American Incognito

But to whatever animal we ascribe these remains, it is certain such a one has existed in America, and that it has been the largest of all terrestrial beings. It should have sufficed to have rescued the earth it inhabited, and the atmosphere it breathed, from the imputation of impotence....
— Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia

I called for armour, rose, and did not reel.
But when I thought...
I could feel
My wound open wide.
— Thom Gunn, “The Wound”



As if sliding down the green, scuffed face
of the wave, a seaplane falls
and turns together, keeping the waters of

the ear flat: a dead calm. But when the window’ s
frowning strip of shoreline,
the battalions of tropical-drinks umbrellas

guarding the sandcastles and saltboxes
of the rich,
when these flip upside down, and the pale