I wanted the winding
to end the river 
not merely mark the return.
In summer, I floated feathers
on water tension, 
counting the surfacing loons.

The night we met, I vowed
to snuff every lamp in the city.
Narrowboats sway at mooring
and I have never been anywhere.



We keep anything with flavor.
Windows steam, your skin

peppered in flaxseed. The kitchen
is like a kitchen

on TV. A bedroom,
sheets stripped like salt beef.

I want your shirt
in with the lentils.

I want this taste
everywhere: the ribs,

the thighs, the meat.



JOHN MINSER teaches writing at Northern Michigan University, where he also serves as associate poetry editor of Passages North. His writing has appeared in The Monarch ReviewScholars and Rogues, and DIAGRAM.


Photo by Lauren Henley