How I Discovered America
by Brian Beatty
East of downtown, Lake Michigan
was all it took for me (no native guides)
to orient myself by Chicago’s freshwater sea.
“You’re a young man going as far as you can,
constantly afraid you might drown” perfectly
describes my mid-twenties roaming the city.
More than one crowded sidewalk
I navigated with an orange life jacket
tugged over my everyday clothes.
Brian Beatty’s poems and stories have appeared in numerous print and online publications, including The Bark, Conduit, Dark Mountain (England), The Evergreen Review, Forklift Ohio, Gigantic, The Glasgow Review of Books (Scotland), Great Walks (Australia), Gulf Coast, Hobart, McSweeney’s, Midwestern Gothic, The Moth (Ireland), Opium, Paper Darts, Phoebe, The Quarterly, RHINO, Seventeen, Southern Poetry Review and The Sycamore Review.
Beatty is the author of the collections Coyotes I Couldn’t See (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2016) and Brazil, Indiana (Kelsay Books/Aldrich Press, forthcoming).