Passing Train Whistle — Joseph Somoza

While the fire is snapping
and roaring, I should
stay out here with the grackles
who dropped in this morning
to investigate the bird feeder.
I should stay to watch the leaves
fall whenever a dove swoops down
to perch on a branch.

The dogs in the next yard
call to each other to
come chase. The sun
sits for a moment at a good place
behind the mulberry
and sends long shadows out
across the sandy back yard,
every grain of which
I know by heart.


Joseph Somoza was born in Spain and grew up in New Jersey and Chicago. He took early retirement from New Mexico State University, where he taught English, to have more time for writing. He’s published ten books and chapbooks of poetry, most recently As Far As I Know (Cinco Puntos Press, 2015) and lives in Las Cruces with wife Jill, a painter.