The Iowa Review


          Here is a little song to comfort you.
          Sing it to yourself softly, simply, just as you are.
            —Robert Schumann to Clara Schumann, July 1840

His scent still rose off my skin.
My pores exuded the impress of his hand
and my throat whimpered want, when
the bouquet of songs arrived, bound
by a single chord, which I plucked, spilling
sheaves, all their cadent, radiant content.

I his rapture, I his pain. He mine.
He said light hit the water like a cadenza
that day, but his soul would not resist
the shadows of the bridge, its countermelody.
Now, as behind me each door slams, bolts,
I only meet what beats in him

in the tremolo of my larynx
or the dark corridor of the keyboard.

The Iowa Review

Founded in 1970 and edited by faculty, students, and staff from the renowned writing and literature programs at the University of Iowa, The Iowa Review takes advantage of this rich environment for literary collaboration to create a worldwide conversation among those who read and write contemporary literature.
     They publish a wide range of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, translations, photography, and work in emerging forms by both established and emerging writers. Work from their pages has been consistently selected to appear in the anthologies Best American Essays, Best American Short Stories, Best American Poetry, The Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses, and The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories.

The Iowa Review online


Nell Regan is an Irish poet and non-fiction writer. Her 3rd collection One Still Thing (Enitharmon Press) is partly based on her time in Iowa and the US as a Fellow on the International Writing Programme, University of Iowa and Fulbright Scholar at UC Berkeley. Other awards include the 2016 Patrick and Katherine Kavanagh Fellowship and her latest publication is the historical biography, Helena Molony: A Radical Life (Arlen House).

"Lieder" originally appeared in The Iowa Review Volume 43, Issue 1 (Spring 2013).

Nell Regan's website

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on January 17, 2018

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