Silent street, cinematic every time
a car, a motorcycle
someone in sharp

Every moment he could have
should have kissed her.

Couple sits in the living room,
floors below, speaks
of divine reassurance,
how they knew.

Somewhere it is raining
in the Southern hemisphere
and a person leaves his building
in silver-blue chiaroscuro.




So they climbed straight up
the fire escape, like the skilift
climb, though with farther to

Cars on the highway sounded
like water

Clear water along the way

The empty park dark, the building.

People walked out
to balconies, went back, turned on
lights, closed doors.


Cars streaming like water.

The first time he would see
her naked back – a silver

“Don’t hesitate to act on your
ideas. Always believe that you can
do more and do better. Above all,
make use of Mars before it leaves
your sign on Sunday.”




What is here, what am I seeing, what am I doing?

The trail we found where we didn’t expect it,
the walk through tall reeds and burrs, pushing
into the woods, walking over a ridge that had
been an old stone wall and reminded us of a
giant’s head,


Wet eyes, a mirror for mine

Then bushwhacking to a pile of rocks that
looked large, thinking about heading
back – only to discover we had found another
trail, and we took it,




Clare Needham is the author of the novella Bad Books, published by Ploughshares Solos in 2015. Her work has appeared in New York Tyrant, Catapult, Bodega Magazine, Fiction Attic Press, and Armchair/Shotgun. She has been a resident at Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.