Awake

By Richard Schiffman

Featured Image: “Rendezvous in the Forest” By Henri Rousseau

Already morning ignites
the high wicks of the pine.
A few birds trilling,
don’t ask me their names,

or my own as I stumble
out of bed on sea legs,
rub my eyes until stars appear
like ships still foundering

on the reef of night.
But when I open them again, day
is fully rigged and sailing off
with me on it.


Richard Schiffman is an environmental reporter, poet, and author of two biographies. In addition to the New Ohio Review his poems have appeared on the BBC, in the Alaska Quarterly, the Christian Science Monitor, the New York Times, Writer’s Almanac, This American Life in Poetry, Verse Daily and other publications. His first poetry collection “What the Dust Doesn’t Know” was published in 2017 by Salmon Poetry.

Originally appeared in NOR 11.

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