Mike Walker
Gainesville, FL MFA Writing

yellow streetlight only before dawn soft groan of snowplow to state road low moan of furnace clucking on: Terik, it’s ve and you need to get up.
there is ice all over the oil tank
outside, snowfall fallen down
from rooftop in the Siberia of
an Ohio winter’s storm or
Michigan or somewhere east
of Chicago. Rustbelt. NBA &
NHL territory all the way.

but that’s all we have:

we wouldn’t be lovers otherwise, we wouldn’t even have eye contact otherwise.

we’re off-season and following
Sabres or Red Wings scores and
we’ve been this way since the days when Dainius Zubrus was the Justin Bieber
of every state around the Great Lakes.
and we love Eminem, new Jordan 8s, the Bulls, Mustangs, and our cousins in the Marines.

none of it matters when the alarm rings: not that kiss, not the wounds, not the cold and everything frozen outside. either you’re a sprinter about to hit

that off-season grind or you’re not:
it’s only new Nike spikes and black ice.