Justin Carter
Autumn Returns to Martins Ferry, Ohio

Justin Carter - Autumn Returns to Martins Ferry, Ohio

Poetry
Justin Carter is a PhD candidate at the University of North Texas. His work appears in The Collagist, cream city… Read more »
Susan Rich
Coordinates

Susan Rich - Coordinates

Poetry
Susan Rich is an award-winning poet, editor, and teacher living in the Pacific Northwest. She’s the author of four poetry… Read more »
Roy White
Correspondences

Roy White - Correspondences

Poetry
Roy White is a blind person who lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota with a lovely woman and a handsome lab… Read more »
Brian Czyzyk
Eating Emily Dickinson’s Clothes

Brian Czyzyk - Eating Emily Dickinson’s Clothes

Poetry
Brian Czyzyk lives and writes in Northern Michigan. He was awarded the 2017 Dan Veach Prize for Younger Poets from… Read more »
Calvin Olsen
Hammer Strikes

Calvin Olsen - Hammer Strikes

Poetry
Calvin Olsen holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Boston University, where he received a Robert Pinsky Global Fellowship for… Read more »
Sarah Toomey
Orzech Farms

Sarah Toomey - Orzech Farms

Poetry
Sarah Toomey is a junior at Harvard College pursuing a BA in English. Her work has been featured in Off… Read more »
Lupita Eyde-Tucker
Rules of Engagement

Lupita Eyde-Tucker - Rules of Engagement

Poetry
Lupita Eyde-Tucker was raised in New Jersey and Guayaquil, Ecuador. She writes poetry in English and Spanish, and has studied… Read more »
Maryann Corbett
State Office Building, Seventh Floor

Maryann Corbett - State Office Building, Seventh Floor

Poetry
Maryann Corbett spent almost thirty-five years working for the Office of the Revisor of Statutes at the Minnesota Legislature. Her… Read more »

Autumn Returns to Martins Ferry, Ohio

Justin Carter

In the locker room, the linebacker
fixes his eyes on the light bulb
hanging from a hook, thinks of his neck
up there with it, while the quarterback
points a finger to his skull,
pretends the thumb is a trigger
& wavers over pulling it. When James Wright
said suicidally beautiful, those bodies
launched together, did he mean it
this way too? Skulls cracked & cracked
against each other & the turf while,
in the parking lot, a mother refuses
to enter the gate, a father smokes brisket
for the concession stands & isn’t witness
to his son, the special teams gunner,
roaring past the 50, slamming
into the return-man, & falling helpless
to the field. What quiet
is quieter than the thousands of voices
suddenly hushed, of the other boys
as they kneel in prayer
& what’s louder than the applause
when he stumbles to his feet,
takes a play off, then pops back in
at defensive back? In two years,
he’ll be a darkened comet on the sidelines
somewhere in the Missouri… Read more »