How to Murder Rain

There’s no surprise 

attack—it has a bird’s-eye 

view. It will be all fight—dodge 

and parry, dodge, and parry. 

Rain is multitudinous and fast, unafraid 

to fall. It can shift

the ground out from under you, 

raise a breathless wave above 

your head, pin your shoulders 

down, crawl inside your body. Wait 

for it to spend itself—drive it into 

ground, use its body to raise 

an army of grasses, glinting 

their wet swords to sky.

How to Steal Thunder

You have to 

sneak up on it, before 

it sneaks up on you, 

capture it in both 

hands tightly and 

swallow, store 

it in your chest 

as a growl until 

you can cough

it into a mason jar. 

Tighten the lid. 

Store thunder 

away from pets, 

away from jars 

of lightning bugs. 

Bury it in small 

caches, avoid 

straight lines—thunder 

will cause earthquakes. 

Moat your house with 

scraps and store 

a little under your 

mattress. A revolution 

is unraveling.



This bird is dying

His wings splayed open,

Embracing the earth, his new lover.

He breathes heavily of dirt and root,

Dropping a bit of himself in each exhale,

An ultimate yoga.

The bird tries to raise the strength

To push himself into ground.

He is weary, and has already been

Abandoned by his lover the sky.



Maybe it started with the first drops of blood congealing in the ocean.

Or maybe before that, with a man raising his arms, the wings of a loon.

It may have started with the false promise of a warm land


It started with me.  In the middle, there is an island of birds.  My hands are frozen and tired of fish.


There was an escape and chases across water.  The loon diving under,

Having lost his wife.  Her father appeasing the angry ocean with his daughter.

The blood of her hands becoming seals and whales.


My hands hurt and I cannot comb my hair.  My husband is gone.  Sea mammals, go and bring your father.


The male gods of the ocean slept after her death.  She, 

A new goddess, awoke a storm.  New creatures 

Crashed through the ice.  The terrible suck of the sea.



Danielle Hanson is a poet who strives to create and facilitate wonder. She is the author of the poetry collections Fraying Edge of Sky and Ambushing Water. She was Finalist for 2018 Georgia Author of the Year Award. Her poetry has been the basis for Haunting the Wrong House, a puppet show at the Center for Puppetry Arts. She is Artist-in-Residence at Arts Beacon, Poetry Editor for Doubleback Books, and is on the staff of the Atlanta Review. More about her at