I am pregnant, and a laborious fog

has started this morning on our hometown.

Through it, I can feel the-one-to-be kick,

or that the painted pines glued to the window


include an interior disposition of snow.

I want to say something about nuance

and harm, that’s true to both,

but the not-saying subsides,


and I grow up. I am told

that when the name is right,

a beam of sun will fall

upon a gray conveyor belt.


Cultural amnesia.       Culture of amnesia.

Without chewing, without first removing

his ring, a friend and a lover are the same

in that neither would allow you to choke,


or shred wholly in the daily grind.

Marriedly, I gush, and stir in waves

of ample grains. My hours turn

from the outside in, in a faint


facsimile of maize where a little marble

of farm-light pours through a silo’s dithering

crack. What would a dream job be

if one were asleep already—


Could you give it to someone?

Alec Hershman is the queer author of Permanent and Wonderful Storage (Seven Kitchens Press, 2019), winner of the Robin Becker Chapbook Prize and The Egg Goes Under (Seven Kitchens Press, 2017). He has received awards from the KHN Center for the Arts, The Jentel Foundation, Playa, The Virginia Creative Center for the Arts, and The Institute for Sustainable Living, Art, and Natural Design. He lives in Michigan where he teaches writing and literature to college students. You can learn more at