For Three Friends I Once Knew, and Still

Corbin Louis


found dead by their parents

in bedrooms they were raised in

and rose    the petal of veins

with such blueness    and still rose

onto mantles before the ground

the whole bunch of them like

a bouquet    cut at the stem

and placed perfectly for us

to cherish    and from the dirt

before going back into it



A recent Jack Straw Writer’s Resident and MFA graduate at the University of Washington, Corbin Louis is a Seattle native making work out of a legacy of grunge and rain and illness. Each piece serves as a form of sublimation, transforming dysfunction into arrangements of self-reflection and cultural critique. Corbin’s goal as an artist is to garner awareness and support around mental illness by creating pieces that shriek for understanding, and he has been published by Best American Experimental Writing, Random Sample Review, Visible Poetry Project and others.