Ars Poetica

It happens as we set down one story
and take up another. We see it—the car,

the skid, the panic, the woman’s body, a stain
on snow like blood in a dancer’s shoe.

People bend over, afraid to touch her
in case she might rise, a bird startled to find

there wasn’t more light on the other side
of the window. The body in so much pain

the soul can no longer keep it. This is how
it happens—something asleep in the earth awakens

and summons us. You feel fingers on your neck
and say, Take me to the snow, and it takes you.

Traci Brimhall has received the Halls Poetry Fellowship from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Tennessee Williams Scholarship from the Sewanee Writers' Conference. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in New England Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, FIELD, The Southern Review and The Missouri Review. (

Boxcar Poetry Review - ISSN 1931-1761