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Jim Daniels

Jim Daniels

Jim Daniels is the author of Punching Out, Revolt of the Crash-Test Dummies, and Show and Tell: New and Selected Poems, among other books and screenplays. His poems have appeared in Best American Poetry and the Pushcart Prize anthology. His awards include the Brittingham Prize for Poetry, and Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. A native of Detroit, Jim Daniels now lives in Pittsburgh. He is the Thomas Stockham Baker Professor of English at Carnegie Mellon University, where he teaches in the creative writing program.

Also by Jim Daniels


Night with Drive-By Shooting Stars

Night with Drive-By Shooting StarsNight with Drive-By Shooting Stars

$14.00 paper | 57 Pages
ISBN: 978-1-930974-15-9
Publication Date: Feb 2002
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An Inland Seas Poetry Book

Jim Daniels' collection bears witness to a life both mis- and well-spent: to the family, remembered and new; to the melancholy pull of drugs and casual sex; to growing up; and to the only tenable way of growing old, which is to embrace every small joy even as one laments its brevity. Indeed, Night with Drive-By Shooting Stars rages not against the dying of light but the dying fall itself—against poetic and existential complacency. "Louder, kids," says Daniels in the beautiful "Cold Seed:" "daddy’s dying."



I have been watching bright yellow blossoms
tossed by wind. When you were pregnant
I should have used more commas and fewer
periods. Today, watching our two children play,
I kissed the rocks they handed me. Yellow flowers
make all life possible—that’s my latest theory.
There are few things smoother than your belly
was then. Not the world surely.
Should we cut the flowers and bring them in,
or leave them out, rooted? Everybody’s got
sticky hands from something sweet. Rocking
into you, rocking out of you, as if those were
the only seconds our clocks counted. Lately,
I miss that fullness. I love this fullness.
I open and close my children’s scissors
in the air above our heads. I am only cutting
air. Whisk, whisk. I am stopping time.