Lines While Waiting

Stone, John

Primary Category: Literature / Poetry

Genre: Poem

Annotated by:
Woodcock, John
  • Date of entry: Aug-23-2001


This poem of ten short lines focuses on the immediacy and surprise of an arm breaking "like a tree branch / the green bones sprung like the tines of a fork."


Stone takes us almost grotesquely close to the imagery of breaking bones, and he sharpens the existential pain implied for the patient by challenging his audience's (perhaps his own) removal from the horrible moment, preceding the images with "What do you care . . . ?"

Primary Source

The Smell of Matches


Rutgers Univ. Press

Place Published

New Brunswick, N.J.