Peter Grandbois

Conversation with rain

I stayed up all night listening to the rain
Saying, yes, I hear you, your suffering.


Sometimes I think too hard, it said
Sometimes I think love is impossible.


I pulled a blanket about me. I know
I said, how loneliness can clothe us.


Each day holds the same clatter, it said, each
Night the same choir of rattling leaves again.


The moon waxed full within my ribs like a
Long wailing I couldn’t shake from my breath.


Each corridor of hours a train tunneling
Through the vanishing fog that is my body.


I pulled moths from my mouth, released them against
The pane. I’ll show you what’s real. I’ll show you—


The wind is a god that can’t be contained,
it said, a silence that should not be named,


And life is one long goodbye, I think it
Also said, though I can’t be sure, for its voice,


By then, was a whisper, a pattering cry,
A sigh sown through with a familiar tone,


And words that could have been my own.

Peter Grandbois is the author of fourteen books, including the Snyder prize-winning, Last Night I Aged a Hundred Years (Ashland Poetry Press, 2021). His poems, stories, and essays have appeared in over one hundred and fifty journals. His plays have been nominated for several New York Innovative Theatre Awards and have been performed in St. Louis, Columbus, Los Angeles, and New York. He is poetry editor at Boulevard magazine and teaches at Denison University in Ohio. You can find him at

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