The Poetic Hill


Jona Colson’s debut poetry collection, “Said Through Glass,” was published this fall and won the Jean Feldman Poetry Prize from the Washington Writers’ Publishing House. He received his BA in English and Spanish from Goucher Collect and a Master of Fine Arts degree from American University. His poems have appeared in The Southern Review, Ploughshares, Subtropics, The Massachusetts Review, and elsewhere. His interviews and translations can be seen in The Writer’s Chronicle, Prairie Schooner, and Tupelo Quarterly. He teaches at Montgomery College in Maryland and lives in Dupont Circle. Learn more at

The Other Life
Before I leave, I want to know

about the other life.

I want to hear my name
from another animal’s mouth.

I want to be in the delicate folds
of a crab’s underbelly and

startled by the softness of a shell.

I want to be the blue fish
in the blue sea—all current and

unhunted. Would I have
the same heart as I circle

the paddle grass with my shimmer and fins?
The same red muscle that pumps

too faintly to hear its own thrashing?


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