John A. Nieves

by John A. Nieves

It’s still gnat light over the porch

steps. The creak near the front of the board

you’d stand on and draw in

night had gone out,

had left its voice in the just-spring sounds,

in the not-yet-violent warmings. I almost

see the way you’d turn when I tapped

the glass. I almost hear you call

me to the door. The magnolia’s waxy leaves

send what’s left of the sun back

at me as smudges. The children in the yard

behind ours shriek backwards

from ten. I’m sure someone is hiding.

I’m sure the rags of their voices are

oiling the fear valves of one

particular heart. The dogs know this

and join in. The possum by the garage

pulls back and I want to ask you if you want

to come in. But the steps

are fully in my view and they hold

nothing but my attention.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 19, Issue 1.

John A. NievesJohn A. Nieves won the Indiana Review Poetry Contest and his first book, Curio (2014), won the Elixir Press Annual Poetry Award Judge’s Prize. He is an 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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