The first night in my new house
all I bring is a box of books,
a liter of vodka, a blanket
I stretch across the carpet antarctic.
The air conditioner hums into the night,
making it cold like a Soviet winter
while I open Chekhov and sip
from the bottle. And as the little
campfire inside me begins to die
the gruff Russian voice that tends it says
throw on another log to the man lying
against the tree, his hat tipped forward
and head dipping into sleep.
Daniel Robbins is a graduate student at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where he served as editor for the Kaleidoscope and technical writer for the IT department. Recently, he has appeared in The Allegheny Review, Birmingham Poetry Review, and Aura Literary Arts Review. He has won several awards including the Barkesdale-Maynard Poetry Award and a Hackney Literary Award for Poetry, and is currently working on a book about comic-book literature entitled In Defense of Men in Tights.
Daniel Robbins was nominated for Poets Under 30 by Bob Collins.