Pushcart Prize Nominee: Keith Leonard

the minnesota review is pleased to feature each of our nominees for the 2012 Pushcart Prize in the coming weeks.  This week we are excited to bring you Keith Leonard‘s “A Brief History of Fiction.” Please check back next week for more on our nominees and their work.

A Brief History of Fiction

If I get the story right
my mother’s empty bottles

will melt back into sand —
just enough for a shoreline

the size of our driveway.
We could hold our shoes

by their heels without talking.
In this version, I know

the password to leaven
the latch of fingers

wrapped around aluminum cans.
I hold a compact mirror

up to her nose to see the fog
of the living. If I get the story

right, a fog will settle
over the shore and there

will be no other place to look
but at each other.

A Brief History of Fiction” was first published in issue 79 (Fall 2012) of the minnesota review. Keith Leonard is an MFA candidate at Indiana University. A recipient of an Academy of American Poets prize and finalist for the Washington Square poetry prize, his poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Best New Poets, DIAGRAM, Hayden’s Ferry Review, The Journal, Laurel Review, Meridian and Toad. His chapbook “All the Ships Tied In” has been selected for publication by YesYes Books, and is slated to come out this coming summer. He is currently working on a book of odes called “Ramshackle Ode,” and Southern Indiana Review nominated one of those odes for the Pushcart, and did a little recording of it which can be found here. You can read “A Brief History of Fiction” or any of our other Pushcart nominees by accessing our online archive at Duke University Press, available here.


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