Iowa Writes

At the Speed of Sight

Believe me, a line can take years to find
its place in the poem, to rise through the layers
of earnestness like a stone working its way
to the surface. What I wanted

blinded me to what wasóhow the broken
cornstalks gleamed in our fields
after the harvest, after the ravages of ice.
I see how I walked like a stranger among them.

Today my child holds out a bouquet
of wet leaves for her friend, trophies salvaged
from our pondóchestnut, bronze, near translucent.
She sees how they shine.

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


Carol Westberg grew up on a farm near Essex, Iowa, and received a BA from Duke and an MFA in poetry from Vermont College. Her poems have appeared in journals such as Prairie Schooner, Hunger Mountain, Granite Review, and Tiferet. She now lives in Norwich, Vermont.

This page was first displayed
on January 03, 2007

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