Nils Peterson: Talk in the Reading Room
About Nils Peterson

 The Reading Room
 Xmas Eve at the Big House 
 Christmas Mysteries 
Summers in Long Island 
 Father Arrives in the    Triumphal Car 
 Yankee Stadium Gone 
 A Thing of Beauty 
 Learning From My Father 
 Learning From My Mother 
The Bus


Next Stop 
 Going to College
 My Lecture on Romanticism 
 A Story 
 Go Way From My Window 
• Singing in the Rain 
 On the Nature of Exposition 
 A Latin Class
 A Hero's Life
 Letter to Paul Cantrell
• Homecoming 
 The Moon and the Bulldozer


Next Stop

May morning. I lie between two dogs, the little
new one rests against my leg, the middle-sized
old one curls into an oval in her bed on the floor.
They’ve been fed. I’ve been coffeed. In-between-time.

I’ve been reading some poems, and though I can
think of nothing they’ve said that would cause this
to happen, I’m sixteen and on a train going off to college.
The engine has failed to keep up with the striding sun so

the sky has fallen dark. An answering dark has risen
from the forest and hills of Penn’s woods. I’d been
on trains before, mostly the New-Haven Hartford
into New York City even though it was more expensive

than the usual trolley to subway and on down. Now I’ve eaten
from the heavy silver and thin china of the dining car,
smoked a cigarette in the shifting, noisy space
where the car before links to the car behind.

I have gotten my one sweater out of my suitcase
and folded my sports jacket with the too-short
sleeves so it wouldn’t wrinkle much. I’ve read
all my eyes will allow in the dim coach car light.

Nothing to do but try to sleep while the train
ticked along the rails that would not let it go
other than where it was going, then sleeping,
fitfully, even through the Pittsburgh stopover,

till I woke up, fed the dogs, made coffee
and started to read poems....


  © 2014, Nils Peterson

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