Meredith Martin '97 is an Assistant Professor at Princeton University, where she teaches poetry of the 19th and 20th centuries. Her poems have appeared in Fireweed, Hubbub, and West Coast Line, and she is currently working on a manuscript of poems titled Apologies. At Smith, she took poetry classes with Karl Kirchwey, Sharon Cadman-Seelig, Susan Van Dyne, and Pat Skarda. During her senior year, she helped Annie Boutelle write the proposal that resulted in the Poetry Center at Smith.


Meredith Martin '97



       after Horace 

An honest man has no need for weapons.

Through the cracked desert, the steepest mountains,

Even the thick banks of deadly rivers 

No need.  When I carelessly left this place,

Her name on my lips, all doubts left with me.

Even the thought of her thighs welcoming 

Any wolf in sheep's clothing.  No thoughts

But her name on my lips and I could be

At the farthest station of this grim earth,

Waiting for a train that will never come 

Or scorched and longing on the horizon

Of a cruel dawn, shelterless, and her name

On my lips will revive me, Lalagé.

My blood sings the echo of her sweet laugh. 

Note: This poem was written in Karl Kirchwey’s advanced creative writing seminar in 1997. Meredith Martin read with Karl Kirchwey (as well as with Elizabeth Alexander and Abe Louise Young) on December 4, 2007.

Meredith Martin reads at Smith December 4, 2007
More poems (and longer bio) by Meredith Martin