Storm warning, the snow dull gray
in the dark, the cries of animals
muffled in sleep. Yawning, I drive
as desperately as I dare, the road
crumpled like newsprint in gloom.
At the far end of my travel
my job will glitter in its beauty,
a nude posed on a marble plinth.
I should have stayed home and snored
the snore of perfect innocence,
but everyone would know I lied.
Trees remain aloof, refusing
the lilt of flimsy northeast wind.
My headlights rake the shoulder
for the glitter of staring deer.
Hit one and you might crumble
in your skin. I try to be careful,
but I drift to the snowball fight
that fifty years ago defined me,
a first effort at taking sides.
Thirty or forty kids fought.
Nobody won. The plaintive joy
of flinging snowballs overswept
an otherwise pointless childhood.
The highway suffers beneath me
but I won't relent. The snow falls
in long soft diagonals bent
to conform to my secret glee.
teaches at Keene State College in New Hampshire. His most recent collection of poetry is Waiting for the Angel (2009). He has published three critical studies, including Robert Lowell's Shifting Colors. His essays, poetry, fiction, and reviews have appeared in many journals, including Massachusetts Review, Atlanta Review, Notre Dame Review, The Alembic, New England Quarterly, Worcester Review, Harvard Review, Modern Philology, Antioch Review, and Natural Bridge.