Iowa Writes


Madison Square Garden
came into our home
all the way from New York
on black-and-white waves
of radio

I visualized willows
weeping into quiet pools
flowers splashing color about
squirrels playing peek-a-boo
from behind a tree

Dad turned up the volume on our Motorola
championship BOXING
from the garden at Madison Square

Then I saw something different
bright lights    cigar smoke
battered men bathed in blood
and sweat    spitting into a bucket
the howl of the crowd    screaming
kill the bastard

What's going on here
I said to Dad
the squirrels aren't going
to like this . . .

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


This poem originally appeared in Volume 5, Number 6 of 100 Words, a journal published by The University of Iowa's International Writing Program between 1993 and 1998. Each piece in the journal had to be 100 words or fewer, and each issue had a theme. This issue's theme was "On Garden."

This page was first displayed
on May 22, 2009

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