Trio House Press
publishing distinct voices in American Poetry
since 2011

The Traditional Feel of the Ballroom by Hannah Gamble

Hannah Gamble is a poet, essayist, screenwriter, and director. Her first book of poems, Your Invitation to a Modest Breakfast, won the National Poetry Series in 2011. In 2014, she received the Ruth Lilly/ Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. She is the writer, director, and executive producer of the Chicago-based webseries Choose Me: An Abortion Story, which was selected for several national and international film festivals, winning the Award of Excellence for a TV Show from the Montreal Independent Film Festival in 2020.
Most People Would Rather Not

Most people would rather not,
but I indulge, every few weeks,
the thought of it.

Sometimes the oily smell of an evening flower appears
and hangs in the air,
a slightly browner spot.

I think most people had it wrong when they said
forget about it and find a fresh patch
of grass to lie down in.

There are prayers, though,
about that kind of peace.

I have to admit,
sometimes I want nothing more than to be lying on the bottom
of an unimpressive river.

I can watch all the leaves and sticks skim over my head,
and no one will bother me
because they're swimming
in the more impressive rivers.

The water's not too cold. It doesn't feel
like being dead.

It also doesn't feel like being old
or fetal.

I came to the humble water to lie down.

I did what I set out to do.

Now I don't have to tell you
anything more about it.