Submission Guidelines: Send unpublished poems in the body of an email (NO ATTACHMENTS) to nvneditor[at] No simultaneous submissions. Use "Verse News Submission" as the subject line. Send a brief bio. No payment. Authors retain all rights after 1st-time appearance here. Scroll down the right sidebar for the fine print.

Monday, April 03, 2023


by Tricia Knoll

Trump fingerprinted. Putting his fat fingers

on the inky pad, rolling each one back 

and forth like criminals do. Dirty

hands. Who hands him something

to wipe the ink off? Does he bite at his

lip angry about he got here? Does he try 

to make a joke, pretend it’s an autograph

requested by some MAGA man

in a red hat? Talk about it going 

to his Library? 


Those secret service agents watching, 

what do they know of irony?

What vow have they made?


The bored jail officer has done this

a million times. Can that officer

categorize the look in the eye of this man? 


When it’s all done, is he obsessed

with the shadow of ink only he

can see? Wondering what smut 

clogs his crevices, the bacteria 

that linger. Does he ask his aide

for hand sanitizer as if to wipe

away the moment. 


Does anyone in the room dare



Tricia Knoll is a Vermont poet. Her most recent collection is One Bent Twig (FutureCycle Press, 2023) which shares poems about trees she has loved, planted or worries about in the time of climate change.