Erin Hoover

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Erin Hoover

Visiting assistant professor

I love the bungalow
she lived in,
its porch with birdnest
stuffed in the eaves,
its eaved porch,
sweet gum street
lined with wintry,
northern trees. Road
she walked to her work
at the college—
her gates wrought-iron,
my pine-needled paths,
the train tracks that
I, too, cross,
next to her office
with its high ceiling,
its bookless shelves I fill.
I call the other professors
colleagues, our conversation
a vessel into which
I pour water
that was once
someone else’s,
this work a table
where another
supped. The days tick by
and the sense of a person
recently exited
disappears from the rooms,
and soon the students
who remember her
are gone. I hope
myself enough
to fill this place,
for two years,
for three,
my nest, my path,
this pitcher of words
I pour and pour
and pour.

Erin Hoover reads “Visiting assistant professor”


Erin Hoover is the author of Barnburner, winner of a Florida Book Award in poetry. Her collection No Spare People was published in October 2023 by Black Lawrence Press. She lives in rural Tennessee and works as an assistant professor of English at Tennessee Tech. Read more of her work at