We might not have come if we’d considered
thirteen degrees for seven hours, every muscle tensed,
bladders engorged. Last year, we didn’t sing
U2 songs with a dozen college kids from Ireland
or watch thirty-somethings from Barcelona
swallow grapes whole at six p.m., the Spanish New Year,
and we couldn’t have comprehended the sound
of one million voices counting back from ten
until ours were lost among them. Last year,
we were only two people watching on TV,
but we had one bathroom apiece, and hot chocolate
cradled against our bellies like tiny radiators.
Melissa Fite Johnson’s poetry has appeared in such publications as I-70 Review, The New Verse News, and Inscape Magazine. Her first collection, While the Kettle’s On (Little Balkans Press, 2015), won the Nelson Poetry Book Award. Melissa and her husband live in Kansas, where she teaches English. Her website: melissafitejohnson.com.