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MIKE GOOD | There Is a Certain Quiet in Maine


—Thorpe Moeckel

But here, something else. Listen to the cars outside

the bedroom, rolling through the stop sign. Like waves,

like the refrigerator’s seal. Like red blood cells,

turning blue and red, and blue

and black. I wish I were in Maine. I imagine

hearing Maine in the squeaking ceiling fan

that will continue turning long after I am gone.

I hear it at two a.m. when a woman walks past my window,

threatening to call the police

and then stops speaking. I hear it

in the landscapers’ motors buzzing even now.

A song stuck in my head. I hear waves crashing

like cars somewhere far away, and somewhere

I am atop that wave. I ride above it, along the sewer,

lines overflowing into rivers. I hear it as

the plants hear me typing even now.

I hear it in the brush of a dog’s tail on a carpet,

a pendulum swinging. I hear it in my dumb voice

saying nothing to the feet tapping above me. I also have been

in the car that sounds like a wave, grinding

over cans and broken glass, metallic jangle in wind,

brushing past windows, storefronts, where I’ll again be soon,

caught like Muybridge’s horses, floating in motion,

hearing hope glisten, in the suckling sound of a can

of beans opening, as I twist the wobbling faucet and drown.


Mike Good lives in Pittsburgh. Some of his recent poetry can be found in or are forthcoming at Bennington Review, december, Five Points, Ploughshares, Prolit,, Waxwing, and elsewhere, in addition to anthologies such as The Pittsburgh Neighborhood Guidebook (Belt Publishing). His work has received support from the Sewanee Writers' Conference and The Sun, and he holds an MFA from Hollins University. Find more at


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