Crossing Ramapo River

By Michelle Bonczek


When your father was your age,
he had a turtle named Clod the size
of a cloud that used to float him

to work and from school, to the store,
to the side of the curb where he took
out the trash. And you believed this.

You believed it all. Thought
a kite string was enough to pull you
from gravity’s arms, thought the chord

of a song played in the right key would open
a fissure in space and bring world peace.
You believed in his God.

You bought it all
hook, line, and sinker and you the fisherman now
of your own fate, sailing

with the wind and current
of your own life, now, not biting
on anything.

Michelle Bonczek's chapbook The Art of the Nipple is forthcoming from Orange Monkey Publishing. Her poems have been published widely in journals, including Crazyhorse, cream city review, Green Mountains Review, Orion, and The Progressive. She holds an MFA from Eastern Washington University, and a PhD from Western Michigan University. An avid gardener and photographer, she currently teaches writing in Syracuse, NY. 

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