top of page

The Winter Man

Late at night, a stranger bangs on my door.

I tell him to go away. I tell him

I called the police. I tell him

I have a gun. He tells me

he’s not afraid. I tell him

I’m not afraid either. He tells me 

paramedics will use a cloud as a stretcher 

to carry his body to heaven.

I don’t believe him. I tell him

the wind broke my heart.

I’m holding it together with an old sock.

I want to return to my crossword puzzle.

I want to see if rapture is the seven-letter word for ecstasy.

I peer through the curtains and see 

him, snow pecking at his eyes like a vulture. 


RICK BURSKY’s most recent book is Let’s Become a Ghost Story, BOA Editions. He teaches poetry for The Writer’s Program at UCLA Extension.


bottom of page