Jane Mead


As is the name of the earth, goes this good one.
As is the name of the molten river.
As is the name, that river going forth.

The moon in the trees was a good moon,
The world in the sound-bite, a good world.
As in tunneling, the years went forth.

Narrow misses. Some bright star for stopping.

Madeleine gave me pomegranate seeds.
Betsey gave me strong tea with sugar.
Already we have suffered over the dropped fruit enough.

Already we have drunk the wine and suffered.

I have not yet come to a place of stopping.
You have not yet come to a place of stopping.
This is the way. Some people have hands.

Being a woman, you flow and keep.
There’s a birthing-tent waiting on the plains.
This is the way. Some people have hands.


Jane Mead received her BA in Economics from Vassar College and earned an MA and an MFA from Syracuse University and the University of Iowa, respectively. She is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently Money Money Money Water Water Water, from Alice James Books. Her poems have been published widely in anthologies and journals and she is the recipient of grants and awards from the Whiting, Guggenheim and Lannan Foundations. For many years Poet-in-Residence at Wake Forest University, she now manages the ranch her grandfather purchased in the early 1900’s in Napa Valley, where she grows zinfandel and cabernet wine-grapes. She teaches in the Drew University low-residency MFA program in Poetry and Poetry in Translation.