Mayapple Press

Occupied Territory – Evelyn Wexler

Occupied Territory – Evelyn Wexler

Paper, perfect bound, 80 pp
$10 plus s&h
1994, ISBN 0-932412-06-8

“These intense, visceral poems cover the territory occupied by fear, pain, memory, loss and desire. The ultimate paradigm is that of the self–dual embodiment of victim and aggressor. Wexler’s clear, steady voice convinces us that everything is both personal and political.” — Jane Flanders

The Suitcase
by Evelyn Wexler

for Lukacs Denes

When he was nine
and on the run,
his mother gave him
a small maroon
leather suitcase.
He carried it with him
to all the places.
Taped inside the lid,
a cellophane envelope
of cyanide, in case
they caught him alive.

He lived through the war.
Cannot tell how. He’s
a doctor now. Married.
Owns a yellowing
hand-crocheted tablecloth
and grandmother’s hollow
bone prayer book
that survived Auschwitz.
Keeps the old suitcase
in his bedroom,
inside a waiting closet.
Just in case.

Evelyn Wexler taught high school English for many years and is a member of the Stone Circle Poets at Sarah Lawrence College. Occupied Territory is her second book; her first, The Geisha House was also published by Mayapple Press in 1992.

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