My Father Tells Me He Would Choose to Die

Jim Whiteside

Througha café windowI watch as a stormblows in across the lake,and snow beginsto soften the edgesof everything.I am tryingto write itdown. I lookat my notebookand see a dark spoton the page,hold it upto the light—someflaw in the paper,a little pointof ignition, a placewhere it wantedto burnbut couldn't.

Feature Date


Selected By

Share This Poem

Print This Poem

Headshot of Jim Whiteside

Jim Whiteside is the author of a chapbook, Writing Your Name on the Glass (Bull City Press, 2019) and is a former Wallace Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University. He is the recipient of scholarships from from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, as well as residencies from Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Jim’s poems have appeared or will soon appear in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The American Poetry Review, POETRY, Ploughshares, The Southern Review, Best New Poets 2023, and Boston Review. Originally from Cookeville, Tennessee, he holds an MFA from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Cover of the Florida Review 46.2


Orlando, Florida

University of Central Florida

Editor & Director
Lisa Roney

Managing Editor
Leah Washburn

Poetry Editor
Kenneth Hart

The Florida Review is published twice yearly by the University of Central Florida. Our artistic mission is to publish the best poetry, prose, and graphic narrative produced by the world’s most exciting emerging and established writers and artists.

We are not Florida-exclusive, though we acknowledge having a jungle mentality and a preference for grit, and we have provided and continue to offer a home for many Florida writers. We have been in more or less continuous semi-annual print publication since 1975 and have recently (2017) added a new literary supplement in Aquifer: The Florida Review Online, which will feature new literary works on a weekly basis, as well as author interviews, book reviews, and digital storytelling.

Poetry Daily Depends on You

With your support, we make reading the best contemporary poetry a treasured daily experience. Consider a contribution today.