Susan Tepper is the author of eight published books of fiction and poetry. Her most recent book just out in June is a zany road novel titled “What Drives Men.” Honors and awards include eighteen Pushcart Nominations, a Pulitzer Prize Nomination for the novel “What May Have Been” (Cervena Barva Press, and currently being adapted for the stage), NPR’s Selected Shorts Series, Second Place Winner in Story/South Million Writers Award, Best Story of 17 Years of Vestal Review, Shortlisted 7th in the Zoetrope Novel Contest (2003), Best of the Net and more. Tepper is a native New Yorker.


The sea pulls
a long string
under my rib cage
Lost city submerged
boundaries unclear
you spoke of love
climbed fences one by one
as distance grew
out of the air
cows make their soft unending cry.


Grass heavy
in my bucket
I have ordered us both
not to
A day longer than
what came before
and will be longer still
‘til one of us
feels free enough
to jump.