by John Brantingham

There was one time in the dead

center of summer after we’d

had a Santa Ana, and the glass

on the windows seemed ready

to melt but the Santa Ana was over

and storm clouds had moved in. A snap

of lightning and all the rain in the world

landed on our street. It poured for three

minutes and moved on. When it was gone,

the street steamed and hissed

until it was dry again. Last night,

I woke up at two in the morning.

You were lying perfectly still,

and you didn’t know I was watching you.

When I saw you lying there so quietly last night,

that’s just exactly how I felt.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: John Brantingham’s poetry and fiction have been published in hundreds of magazines and venues, including Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac, PEARL, Tears in the Fence, Confrontation, and The Journal. His books include East of Los Angeles and Let Us All Pray to Our Own Strange Gods (forthcoming from World Parade Books). He works at Mt. San Antonio College, where he teaches English and directs the creative writing programs.

“How I Felt” appears, along with other poetry by John Brantingham, in the Silver Birch Press release Silver: An Eclectic Anthology of Poetry and Prose a collection of writing from 62 authors that centers around a “silver” theme. The 240-page book is available in paperback and Kindle versions at

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