Midnight Special by Matthew Minicucci


Like most conversations, it’s about light. It’s true: if you drive far enough, fast enough, you’ll start to fly. Something about the horizon as X. A dome of cypress trees as Y. Something about here as a layered thing, one piece on top of the other, like teaching a child to build an ice cream sundae. We never got around to that, did we? It’s not supposed to work this way. I should be showing you the world; shielding you from its pointed edges. You should be the one worrying about losing me. But maybe loss is loss. You can lose a bullet in the clavicle; in that long wind from sternal to acromial. You know it’s there because nothing else seems out of place inside you. Nothing but that. It’s like a road, at night, with nothing to light the way but eyes. You have your mother’s eyes. She was the first person to show me what was just out of reach. How close we all are to something else, something that runs right through us.


Matthew Minicucci is the author of two collections of poetry: Translation (Kent State University Press, 2015), chosen by Jane Hirshfield for the 2014 Wick Poetry Prize, and Small Gods, forthcoming from New Issues Press in 2017. He is the recipient of fellowships and awards from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Wick Poetry Center, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he received his MFA. His work has appeared in or is forthcoming from numerous journals and anthologies, including Best New Poets 2014, Gettysburg Review, Kenyon Review, and The Southern Review, among others.