To My Body

Steven Sanchez
ISBN: 978-0-9975805-1-8
26 pages

To My Body is the gorgeous debut by Lambda Literary Fellow/CantoMundo Fellow, Steven Sanchez. These sixteen poems navigate the difficult paths of faith, sexuality, and family with stunning precision and powerful empathy. "I still love / how light cracks through cathedral / glass," Sanchez writes in "Even if there is No God." "I think about my own body, visible / despite the absence between my atoms, / strung together like beads in a rosary."

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Sample poem from To My Body:

Sunday Mornings

Before sunrise, I collected the Sunday ads and thumbed through the pages of models I’d seen in my friend’s catalog stored between his mattress and frame; women wore bras with elegant black letters scrawled across the page, Limited Time Offer never touching their skin. But it was the men who excited me. Like a magician, I severed waists from torsos, cut out pairs of briefs with left-handed scissors and pressed my thumb against their cotton daggers. Just below their necks I sawed again, took the faces beardless, square-jawed, and pasted them onto broad shoulders whose trapezius muscles rose like pyramids I imagined climbing, navigating the constellations of bodies spread across the sky blue sheets on my bed. I rolled out the glue stick from its sheath, the white tip of a magic wand that could attach the wide shoulders of Hanes models onto lean torsos of the Fruit of the Loom models and align their waists with the briefs and legs of the Cheetah models. I knew to hide these men inside the pages of my dictionary, though words clung to the wet curves of their bodies like newspaper ink on my hands, headlines and stories stained on my skin.
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Steven Sanchez is a CantoMundo Fellow, a Lambda Literary Fellow, and was selected by Mark Doty as the winner of Marsh Hawk Press’ 2016 Rochelle Ratner Memorial Award. His poems have appeared in Nimrod, Crab Creek Review, Word Riot, The Cossack Review, and Tinderbox, among other journals.


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