Tag Archives: Confessionalist

Her Kind by Anne Sexton

I’ve already put up some Anne Sexton on here in the past, but today I wanted to share a recording of her reading one of her most famous poems – Her Kind.  Sexton felt her poetry, her words, on a whole other level.  She turned them into performance pieces, often accompanying the recited words with background music.  While this version doesn’t include music, you can hear how haunting and intense her voice is.


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Filed under Anne Sexton, Confessionalist, Favorites, Poetry

Kim Addonizio – Tell Me poems

In college, I dedicated a fair amount of time in an attempt to find more writers coined as “confessionalist”.  This was, however, after a brief period of time where I presumed that all poets and songwriters were, technically, confessionalist.  Ah, the delusions of a young, uneducated enthusiast.  Somewhere along the way I came across the name Kim Addonizio.

At this point, I cannot remember where I first heard of her, but the article identified her as being like a modern-day confesionalist, possibly likening her to one of my already established favorite poets.  This was incredibly exciting to me since I really enjoy getting a glimpse into the inner chambers of a writer’s experience of the world.  After reading her work, though, even if these poems are all based off complete fictions pulled out of her head, it really doesn’t matter.  The poems are all excellent; they’re teeming with emotion and an honesty that is simultaneously jarring and comforting.  And, if you’ve been following this blog, by now you probably know that I love writing that will really rattle one’s cage.

The Divorcee and Gin

I love the frosted pints you come in,
and the tall bottles with their uniformed men;
the bars where you’re poured chilled
into shallow glasses, the taste of drowned olives,
and the scrawled benches where I see you
passed impatiently from one mouth
to another, the bag twisted tight around
your neck, the hand that holds you
shaking a little from its need
which if the true source of desire; God, I love
what you do to me at night when we’re alone,
how you wait for me to take you into me
until I’m so confused with you I can’t
stand up anymore. I know you want me
helpless, each cell whimpering, and I give
you that, letting you have me just the way
you like it. And when you’re finished
you turn your face to the wall while I curl
around you again, and enter another morning
with aspirin and the useless ache
that  comes from loving, too well,
those who, under the guise of pleasure,
destroy everything they touch.


God it’s sexual, opening a beer when you swore you wouldn’t
drink tonight,
taking the first deep gulp, the foam backing up in the long amber

of the Pacifico bottle as you set it on the counter, the head spilling
so you bend to fit your mouth against the cold lip

and drink, because what you are, aren’t you, is a drinker — maybe
not a lush,
not an alcoholic, not yet anyway, but don’t you want

a glass of something most nights, don’t you need the gesture
of reaching for it, raising it high and swallowing down and

the sweetness, or the scalding, knowing you’re going to give
yourself to it
like a lover, whether or not he fills up the leaky balloon of your
heart —

don’t you believe in trying to fill it, no matter what the odds,
don’t you believe it still might happen, aren’t you that kind of

Buy Tell Me on Amazon.

Photo Source:  Kim Addonizio’s website, photo by Elizabeth Sanderson.

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Filed under Confessionalist, Kim Addonizio, Poetry