PSU Harrisburg

Poem by Chris Middleman


It made sense for Harrisburg
to have three oldies stations

1,000 pencil-lead Cutlass Sierras
all receiving the sunshine of yesteryear

Trusty melodies burning
bright like flood lamps atop breezeways —

reflective hex signs favored by folks
who would refuse the night its nature

Though, these three-minute talismans,
these summer memories of someone else

often were the one thing that kept me
grinning like a skull through 2 years

of weightlessness in that lunar landscape
where the cooling towers of Three Mile Island

always loomed large on the
horizon like graduation in May


The 2016 Luminaire Award for Best Poetry
FINALIST

We are pleased to announce this poem as a Finalist for The 2016 Luminaire Award for Best Poetry, honoring the independent press’ best poems of the year. The winners are selected by an external panel that judges all pieces blindly and selects the full list of 12 finalists from hundreds of entries. Alternating Current does not determine the final outcome for the judging; the external judges’ decisions are final.


CHRIS MIDDLEMAN grew up in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, and now lives, writes, and works in Seattle. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in outlets such as Ladowich, New York Quarterly, and The Collapsar.


Poem originally published on 5/19/16.

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