David P. Miller, “A Bedroom Near the Tracks”

David P. Miller’s collection, Bend in the Stair, was published by Lily Poetry Review Books in 2021. Sprawled Asleep was published by Nixes Mate Books in 2019. Poems have recently appeared in Meat for Tea, subTerrain, Lily Poetry Review, and Nixes Mate Review, among others. He is a member of the Jamaica Pond Poets. His poem “Add One Father to Earth” was awarded an Honorable Mention by Robert Pinsky for the New England Poetry Club’s 2019 Samuel Washington Allen Prize competition.

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A Bedroom Near the Tracks

A golden shovel,* after W. H. Auden’s “Compline”

My hearing unearths the dawn trains. Nothing
sounds inside my sleep: subway-cleaved air is
the neighborhood’s reveille. My body turns with
that murmur, a hand shifts to the clock. All the me
comes together, once again. Lift the blanket now?
All the light I need for liveliness is here, but
my nerve’s still unprepared to rise for such a
stark unveiling. I want one more first sound.

*A golden shovel is a poetic form in which the last word of each line forms a second, preexisting poem (or section thereof), to which the poet is paying homage.

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