• Lammergeier Staff

Purgatorio | Matthew Moniz


The First Word: go

It thunders without rain.

The lightning has no place to go.


The Second Word: depending

Scars are a mark of pain or a sign of growth

depending on who you show them to.


The Third Word: and

you and you and you and you

and you and you and I


The Fourth Word: sometimes

Sometimes sunlight boils the skin.

Sometimes hurricanes kill vermin.


The Fifth Word: enough

And He saw that it was good enough.

On the last day, the Lord let it be.


The Sixth Word: try

Grass stabs the dirt but not your feet

no matter how hard you both try.


The Seventh Word: this

this town this town this town this town

this town this fucking town


The Eighth Word: again

When bones heal wrong

they must be crushed to dust and set again.


The Last Word: choose

We are not kind people, but that can change.

Choose the world you want to live in.





Matthew Moniz is a PhD student in poetry at the University of Southern Mississippi. Originally from the DC area, he holds an MFA and MA from McNeese State University and a BA from Notre Dame. Among other national and international journals, Matt’s work has appeared in or is forthcoming from Crab Orchard Review, Meridian, and Tupelo Quarterly. He has been awarded the SCMLA Poetry Prize and grown in workshops with Tin House and the Community of Writers.


Twitter: @MattMonizPoet


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