Author Archives: Daniel McGinn

About Daniel McGinn

Daniel McGinn's work has appeared numerous anthologies and publications including Bank Heavy, Lummox, Silver Birch Press, the OC Weekly, Next Magazine, Freeze Ray, Spillway, Rip Rap, Re)verb, Amethyst Arsenic and others. His full length collection of poems, 1000 Black Umbrellas was released by Write Bloody Press. He's had five chapbooks published as part of the Laguna Poets chapbook series. He is currently pursuing a MFA in poetry at Vermont College of Fine Arts. He and his wife, poet Lori McGinn, are natives of Southern California. They are old people and they have 3 children, 6 grandchildren, two parakeets and a very good dog.

For the Attendant Who Changes Me

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She is young and beautiful. She is asking me 
something as she takes my arms and pulls me 
up from the bed. She holds on to me and asks 
if I can something as we walk towards 
the thing she places my “hands” on. 

It used to frighten me when I tried to remember 
what was there before the bird flew away. 
I stare into the blankness where words were. 
“Wall,” I remember, they call that thing a wall. 
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It’s been a while since I spent my time
staring at the activity outside my hospital window—
a seventh-story window—
facing a parking lot below;
a window that would not open
because nurses never know
when a patient will discover how they really feel.

I took long walks down short hallways
lined with beige doors, walls interrupted
by neutral art, fruit in baskets,
earth-tone landscapes, calm colors captured
in whitewash frames.
There was always at least one cop
sitting on a folding chair
at the end of my hallway
outside of a patient's door.
I never found out which side of the law
that patient was on,
or what sort of secret
those cops were guarding.
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Four Poems – Daniel McGinn


The Sandbox

I traveled roads I carved with my fingers,
I pressed Tonka treads across hills and valleys,
I wore out that truck; it felt good in my hands.
I don’t know if I spoke to my toy 
or if it spoke to me
but we talked, every day.

When my truck died
I dug a grave in the sand and buried it.
I picked some weeds to place on its chest,
made a cross out of Popsicle sticks 
and said a prayer:

Here is your god. Here is your grave. 
There you go, now you are dead.

My hands were always dirty.
I rubbed fingers against my eyelids. 
Specks sparkled inside the blackness of me. Continue reading