Iowa Writes

drowning, alive again

as each rushing letter washes
past my eyes, I suspend my mind to see beyond
the words they sign and swim to
the deeper meaning of their
message. the poem speaks to me, her
voice underwater, in a way
that only I can hear and I look around
the room to be aware
of this, watching others with
their books, and plants, their chairs.
her fingertips press out to thread
connections to my forehead,
trace around my eyebrows,
then glaze thin lines down the hollows of my cheeks.
why do I feel this only now?
we share blue sapphires of joy,
clasping palm-sized
stones as medallions to our chests,
the ritual of our poetic
engagement, this submarine aqua-d├ętente.
come to me, poem, your droplets rolling off my brow, tapping code to
break my Self away from drowning,
alive again.

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

Find out more about submitting by contacting


In addition to his own poetry, for the past few years Dan Troxell has been hosting published, award-winning poets at his Readings-at-Zanzibar's series in Des Moines, Iowa.

This page was first displayed
on January 03, 2008

Find us on Facebook