Catherine Pierce

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Catherine Pierce

“Paintmakers Are Running Out of the Color Blue”

            news headline
Which feels right. Blue has always been
too easy to come by. And yellow.
And crimson. And silver, god, silver.
Children, for Christmas this year
I’ve procured for you a swatch
of blue cotton. Husband, happy
anniversary, here is an unobstructed view
of a cerulean billboard. Let it be enough
just to say it. Let me love what I have
while I have it. The factories are still
churning out blue doors and skateboards
and lamps. My oldest son’s bedroom is blue.
My nails. Our Honda. The dog’s leash.
Dear husband, dear children, dear parents,
dear sister, dear nephews, dear friends
who send postcards and mix Manhattans
and ask after dogs, I love you, right now
I love you. On the floor at my feet
is the box from my new bike helmet.
It’s azure, the bright creamy shade
of a just-mixed vat. I see it. I let it stun me.

Catherine Pierce reads “Paintmakers Are Running Out of the Color Blue”


Catherine Pierce is the Poet Laureate of Mississippi and the author of four books of poems, most recently Danger Days (Saturnalia 2020). An NEA Fellow and two-time Pushcart Prize winner, she is Professor of English at Mississippi State University, where she co-directs the creative writing program.