Pick-a-Poem: “Swell” & “Comma”


Hello, lovely readers, and welcome to another installment of our “Pick-a-Poem” feature. Each week we feature a different poem plucked from the Poetry Daily website. If you’re looking for a bit of rhyme and verse, then you’ve come to the right place on this Wednesday morning. This week, Poetry Daily has given us a two-for-one! These poems are entitled Swell and Commaand they are both written by Conor O’Callaghan.

According to his author page on Poetry Daily, Conor O’Callaghan has just released his fourth book of poetry, The Sun King, which is published through Wake Forest University Press. WFU Press also published his other collections of poetry, Seatown and Earlier Poems (2000) and Fiction (2005). O’Callaghan also wrote a novel entitled Red Mist: Roy Keane and Ireland’s World Cup Civil WarHe currently teaches at Sheffield Hallam University and Lancaster University in the UK.

Be sure to click through to read Swell, as well as O’Callaghan’s other featured poem, Comma.

Swell and Comma, by Conor O’Callaghan


Mid-March, on the daily a.m. drop-off
through a bunch of affluent side streets
between school and here

a refrigerated dairy produce truck
keeps catching almond and dogwood branches,
so much that blossoms blizzard

the windscreen and moonroof
and I have to switch the wipers
to intermittent in its slipstream.

All I mean to say is that it was lovely,
that not every given is bleak or wrong
and some even are as gorgeous as they are elementary.

The kids come home on different buses
the same shade of egg yolk.
We call my mother from the shore for Easter.

That truck and blossoms story gets longer,
hokier, with each retelling. I’m not bothered.
April’s bright stretches, the mailman says, are swell.

Our local ‘Y’ widens its opening hours a smidgen.
The clay courts opposite pock and shuffle.
I learn to swim.


blip that
a flyover
sped beneath
scores into
a down-

pour on the
timpani is
somewhere I
could stop
indefinitely . . .

I hope you enjoyed this week’s featured poems. For more of these posts, click right here.

— Jet Fuel Blog Editor, Mary Egan

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