Alison Luterman


Walking down my street at dawn
another broken bottle smashed
in a neighbor’s driveway.
Shards of clear glass
scattered in stars
trembling in first light, tossed
from a moving car
or flung down
by the drinker
at his very own feet.
I look down at the wreckage,
up at a tree,
pink petals pushing
out of its bud tips,
then double back home
for broom and dustpan
and begin sweeping.
It takes a long time
to pick the tiniest bits
out of the asphalt,
carrying jagged fragments
back and forth to the recycling.
Who knows why but this
makes me stupidly happy all morning.


Alison Luterman has published four previous collections of poetry, most recently Desire Zoo (Tia Chucha Press) and In the Time of Great Fires (Catamaran Press.) Her poems have been published in The New York Times Magazine, The Sun, Rattle, and many other journals and anthologies. She also writes personal essays, plays and song lyrics.