Nick Conrad





I should have burned

their paper hive,

doused it with gas

and lit the match.


Since May, they had

lurked amid the branches

of a bush by our

front door. I did not


find them out until

late July, or,

rather, a swarm

of them found me.


In the days after

the first frost, their nest seemed

like some grenade lobbed

into the future.


I clipped it loose,

placed it, as best

I could, in a shrub

out back, knowing next


spring its denizens

would stumble dazed

into a halting kind

of flight that all


too soon would turn

into a rage

for a different

kind of order.


Nick Conrad's poems have appeared in national and international journals, most recently Badlands, Blast Furnace, Borderlands, Cortland Review, Dos Passos Review, FreshwaterHawaii Pacific Review, Kentucky Review, Red Savina, South Carolina ReviewSouthern Poetry Review, StoneboatSow's Ear Poetry Review, OrbisVerse Daily, and elsewhere. His work is forthcoming in Valparaiso Poetry Review and Wilderness House Literary Review