The horizons here are close. Not in a cozy, comfortable way like Bobe’s hugs or a warm quilt draped over the shoulders in winter, but hemming, pushing, clenching like the shove of people in the subway cars I used to ride in a different lifetime. Hills and trees block sight. Even the fields of wheat-corn-soy crowd in, their waving stalks an endless maze. Everything is tight. Except for the single ribbon of the river righting the world and letting me, finally and for once now, breathe.
Philip Styrt is an assistant professor of English at St. Ambrose University in Davenport, Iowa, where he lives with his wife, child, and overly rambunctious dog. His work has been published in the Eastern Iowa Review, Writers Resist, Glass: Poets Resist, and The Ekphrastic Review, among others.