Who Was the man By the fire In the house By the bridge By the sea That lapped The windows In a storm In the fall Of my traveling Year He filled The pail With coal He too Had traveled The world Though his trip I knew Could not end He whispered To a woman By the fire As the sea Lashed the windows In the storm As he filled His spade With fire

DAN O’BRIEN is a poet and playwright. A recent Guggenheim Fellow in Drama & Performance Art, his third poetry collection, New Life, is out now with CB Editions in London and forthcoming from Hanging Loose Press in Brooklyn.