Switched-on Gutenberg Issue 20
Late in the Season
The water gathers in pleats
along the prow of the canoe.

A friend who swears I won’t drown
pulls the oars while I lie flat

in the bottom of the boat.
The winter-sharp sky is almost

too much to take, filled as it is
with innumerable stars.

So the world won’t lose them
I speak the names of those

I love aloud to the darkness.
Now they are safe.

My fingers trace across
the lake’s surface.

There’s no sound but
our breathing, and the oars

as they stroke through the water.


Copyright 2014,  William Reichard

William Reichard has published four poetry collections, most recently Sin Eater (Mid-List Press, 2010). He's the editor of the anthology American Tensions: Literature of Identity and the Search for Social Justice (New Village Press, 2011).

Background Photo: Cloud Sweep Johnson Road Copyright 2014,  Barbara LaMorticella

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