Holding Coins By Nicholas Reiner

by Leslie Anne Mcilroy


As mania comes over me
like a slow blanket

I peel a navel orange
with my hands

unfurling so the rind
remains in one piece

forming a staircase
along the edge of the bright skin.

The inside of the rind, white,
feels tough like clay.

Peel in hand, I name
the empty thing

a coin pouch, slip
quarters & dimes

into its center, closing
the pinwheel

over the coins like a home. Later,
I take the citrus pouch out

of my jeans pocket to show
friends what I’ve made

holding gently in my palm
the rind holding the coins

as they look, puzzled,
from the pouch

to my eyes.


 Photo of Nicholas Reiner

Photo of Nicholas Reiner

Nicholas Reiner is a Latino poet from Southern California. He holds degrees from Stanford University and the University of California, Irvine, where he completed an MFA in poetry. His work appears or is forthcoming at Zócalo Public Square, ESPN.com, Ghost City Review, and Connotation Press and he has been a scholarship resident at the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley. He lives in Santa Monica, CA with his wife.