I: Poetry by John Grey & Photography by Jessica Schroer-Smalley, 1


They Were Right After All

The one they thought I should marry
was as delicately bland
as a harp solo,
sat on the bank reading
“Bridges Of Madison County”
while others laughed and splashed
and dunked their feet
in all that gooey underwater spinach.

That’s when I treated opinions like fleabites
and advice as purely circumstantial evidence
while they regarded my life
as a figment of their imagination.
I adjusted to family as blind fish do to cavern waters.

But when water turned too chilly
to sustain roughhousing
and I clambered out of the lake,
whose eyes rubbed me down like a towel?
Whose beauty—yes beauty—
informed the setting sun
that a softer grasp of surfaces was needed?
I snuggled up close to her.
Credit the cricket chorus for the years to come.
And the binding shuttering nightfall.


John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Perceptions, and the war poetry anthology, No Achilles (Waterwood Press, 2015), with work upcoming in Big Muddy Review, Gargoyle, Coal City Review, and Nebo.

Jessica Schroer-Smalley is a photographer from Shelton, CT. Her work has appeared on numerous book covers, including Cold Shivers (2012), by Matthew Champine. To enjoy more of Jessica’s vast portfolio, please visit her online galleries at both DeviantArt and Flickr.


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