Iowa Writes

"The Public Room"

The people are here.
They don't speak.
Their ears drowse.

The people look and do
as I do
but across the room.

Between us
the weight of the sun
focuses the air.

The people
the distance.

The people and I
sit and rise
on the edge of each other.

No move to gather.

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


William Fiore conducts a poetry workshop for children in Morristown, New Jersey.

"The Public Room", originally printed in the Winter 1974 issue of The Iowa Review, can be found, for free, at The Iowa Review's digital archive.

This page was first displayed
on June 18, 2013

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