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Poets are Present: Maureen Thorson

Poets are Present is a poetry residency in conjunction with David Ives’s adaptation of The Metromaniacs. As part of this unique theatre/poetry exchange, the Shakespeare Theatre Company is proud to host more than 30 D.C.-area poets in the theatre’s lobby. Throughout the run, we will share with you the poems that this residency inspired our guests to write. Visit our Poets are Present page to see a list of upcoming SONY DSCpoets.


Maureen Thorson is the author of two full-length collections of poetry, My Resignation (Shearsman 2014) and Applies to Oranges (Ugly Duckling Presse 2011). She is also the author of a number of poetry chapbooks and pamphlets, most recently A Good Attitude (Flying Object 2014). In 2006, she received the Poetry Society of America’s National Chapbook Fellowship for her chapbook, Mayport.


Sonnet for The Metromaniacs

By Maureen Thorson

I come to exhibit myself to the crowd.
(Have you hugged a poet today?)
If you aim to write verse, you can’t be too proud
to bask in attention. It’s fuel to the flame

of each strophe and stanza. A poet retains,
like an actor on stage, a bit of the clown
beneath a learned façade. Her legerdemain
dissolves in bright iambs, in dactylic clouds

that shower wee quatrains, leaving onlookers wowed
(or so it would seem, to the lyrical brain).
But is a poet a fool? Perhaps, though unbowed
by it. In poems, like plays, fools may contain

multitudes: that’s the Bard’s regulation,
one well aligned with the poet’s vocation.

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