:: “I love teaching poets. They never waste words.” 

When I was working on my master’s in creative writing, I took poetry courses too. In fact, when I was an undergraduate, my first creative writing courses were in poetry. Later, one of my favorite narrative writing teachers said to me, “I love teaching poets. They never waste words.”

No one who knows me will ever say I don’t talk a whole lot. But I appreciate the sentiment about the written word. Economy on the page is so important. My books are short. I love writing novellas, even.

Anyways, here’s a poem I wrote back in, in my early 20s, in Baltimore.


Could this heat wipe me away
from yellow tiles and parquet floors

and doors I struggle to keep closed?
Could I be swept away entirely?

I watch water form rivers down
my belly, electric red streaks.

I stand strong under the barrage,
let the mounting pressure

hold me straight from within.
A hand—my own—reaches, twists

the bright chrome knob, releases the cool
burst. Water leaps from fingertips

held open, still reaching. From me drops
the day’s accumulation. Blue

rough longing and my odd ache
run down legs, swirl around toes

mix with other dirt and soil
soon sucked down.


[Click for other poems published on this blog.]


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