(taut jeans dancing)

An Anthology of Poetry about Being Young and Growing Up
Table Of Contents
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C. G. Hanzlicek

He leadeth me beside the still waters. . . I remember that, So many times, him holding the minnow bucket, Leading me down the dock To a boat whose prow lifted and sank In the wake From some idiot water skier. Sputter of motor, Blue oil slick-- I don't know a more beautiful blue-- Deepest cobalt, spreading in our own small wake. Drifting in lily pads, We took northern pike, crappie, Inedible dogfish, Hated perch, always small and too bony And full of worms, they said, Whatever came our way, Still bobbing among the power boats, Then the lake's surface Went from yellow to tangerine To a lucky penny, And we were alone there, Ringed by a stillness of black trees. I'd like to tell you We opened out of ourselves And talked, But, as I try to bring it back, I see us losing Each other's faces in silence, But in a silence that was not a loss. We were best at saying Nothing, lost in a quietude Pure as cobalt. Sometimes the motor wasn't started again: The fish on the stringer, Moon-mouthed, Bumping the side of the boat, Perch and dogfish, To be buried in the garden, To feed roots white as their flesh, Pike and crappie For the table, His hands, my hands, Then both of us pulling our hands To his chest, my chest, His chest, Under the opening stars.

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