On Stasis - Nathan Leslie

Garden hose water lacks
A political agenda, a stance
On the election, gun control.

It tastes just like you think it should,
Like you remember it did,
Still.

The tang of metal,
The rainwater smell  ̶
The surprising sharpness

The garden hose water
Still hisses in the same exact way.
The seam between the hose and the spout
Is ever tenuous, still.

When you spray the stream into the late Spring
Air, it still catches the sun.
Your arm still prickles, simplicity’s code

Nathan Leslie won the 2019 Washington Writers’ Publishing House prize for fiction for his satirical collection of short stories, Hurry Up and Relax. Nathan’s nine previous books of fiction include Three MenRoot and ShootSibs, and The Tall Tale of Tommy Twice. He authored a collection of poems, Night Sweat. Nathan is currently the series editor for Best Small Fictions, the founder and organizer of the Reston Reading Series in Reston, Virginia, and the publisher and editor of Maryland Literary Review. Previously he was series editor for Best of the Web and fiction editor for Pedestal Magazine. His fiction has been published in literary magazines such as ShenandoahNorth American ReviewBoulevardHotel Amerika, and Cimarron Review. Nathan’s nonfiction has been published in The Washington PostKansas City Star, and Orlando Sentinel. Nathan lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and cats. When he is not writing, he loves to play tennis.