Published on Academy of American Poets (

I Love the Hour Just Before

a party. Everybody
at home getting
ready. Pulling
on boots, fixing
their hair, planning
what to say if
she's there, picking
a pluckier lipstick,
rehearsing a joke
with a stickpin
in it, doing
the last minute
fumbling one does
before leaving for
the night like
tying up the dog or
turning on the yard
light. I like to think
of them driving,
finding their way
in the dark, taking
this left, that right,
while I light candles,
start the music softly
seething. Everything
waiting. Even
the wine barely


Copyright © 2013 by Todd Boss. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-A-Day on November 8, 2013. Browse the Poem-A-Day archive.

About this Poem

"I've been reading The Field by Lynne McTaggart, about quantum physics, how we're all connected by the energy between us. I wrote this poem a year ago, but it's been five years since I hosted my last annual October party, a ritual I've neglected. Shame. I miss it. The poem's appearance in October I take as a prompt from the universe: to host again, and more often."
—Todd Boss


Todd Boss

Todd Boss was born in 1968 and raised on a cattle farm near Fall Creek, Wisconsin. Boss received his BA from St. Olaf College in 1991 and his MFA in poetry from the University of Alaska Anchorage in 1994. He is the author of two books of poetry: Pitch (W. W. Norton, 2012), winner of the 2012 Poetry Midwest Booksellers Choice Award, and Yellowrocket (W. W. Norton, 2010). He lives in Minnesota.

Date Published: 2013-11-08

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