Plates by William Palmer


He stands in his garage
beside the pile of plates
he bought at yard sales.

He takes one and flings it
at the steel door:
It was snowing—a whiteout

the boy said
whose car struck his wife
as she opened their mailbox.

The man lifts another plate,
feels its cold shine,
puts it down.

He sweeps the pieces
into a cardboard box
with the other pieces.

In the kitchen he sits
and closes his eyes:
a small door opens—

he finds a parcel
of light.
He thinks it will not go out.


William Palmer’s poetry has appeared recently in Cold Mountain Review, J Journal, On the Seawall, and Poetry East. He has published two chapbooks: A String of Blue Lights, and Humble. Retired from teaching English at Alma College, he lives on Grand Traverse Bay in northern Michigan.

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