Long Dash

John A. Nieves

The first five days read yellow against the window shade. The water

                    pressure barely knew its way

                                        through the pipes. We accordioned

                    the hours on a damp queen with pale green sheets. It was

always morning. The dew always just leaving again

                                        for the sky. No one

                                        named us. No one spent a measure of breath trying

                    to reach inside. Thirty minutes from here, our lives

went on without us. Most of our clothes holding

                    only hangers, only drawer space. The lock firmly

                                        keeping the door. The air switching itself

on and off.

Here, though, the starlings,

                                        the wordless way

                    our bodies say.

From Hunger Mountain Issue 23: Silence & Power, which you can purchase here.

Art by Sondra Graff, curated by Dana Lyons.

John A. Nieves has poems recently published in journals such as: Beloit Poetry Journal, 32 Poems, Southern Review, Cincinnati Review, and Copper Nickel. He won the Indiana Review Poetry Contest and his first book, Curio, won the Elixir Press Annual Poetry Award Judge’s Prize. He is assistant professor of English at Salisbury University. He received his M.A. from University of South Florida and his Ph.D. from the University of Missouri.

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