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Terence Winch

Greg McBride: Pick of the Week [ed. Terence Winch]

Greg McBride
















My sister found our father’s ring,

turquoise faded, sullied silver-plate.


It stopped my breath. Thirty years ago

I took it from his cold hand.


A big man, he never took it off,

not when he dug or swung or swam,


or smeared on huckleberry jam,

or held a cribbage peg, or gripped


a favorite pitching wedge, then fudged

his score again. With feeling,


she placed it on my palm,

we his keepers. I slipped it on.


It hung, slack, wanting more.

It stung. Once, the shoes. Now this.


Greg McBride spent a year as an Army photographer in Vietnam, then thirty years practicing law in Washington, DC, before discovering contemporary poetry in his fifties. It changed his life. In 2005 he became founding editor of the Innisfree Poetry Journal. At the age of 63, he won the Boulevard emerging poet prize. His book Porthole won the Liam Rector First Book Prize. ["Sizes" first appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review.]


GMc Mickey McBride and his son Greg, ca. 1984.

October 10, 2021

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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman

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