For fifty years, we lived

at the bend in Spring Creek

where the stream turns

back on itself,

in a shingled Cape Cod

too small for the family

and dreadfully cold.

 

The creek’s ceaseless song

captained our seasons—

the slow murmur

of half-frozen water

holding tenuously to life

or the great green rush

of an early thaw.

 

Each spring we bailed

the basement

trying to keep our poor boat afloat—

fearing any minute

we might have to swim for it.

How our children learned

to hate that sodden season.

 

They are grown now

and scattered here and there

like the spray of water on rock.

It seems forever since a visit.

The oldest, Jillie, tells me

it took years to get the creek

out of her head.

 

I drove past the old place today—

much of the roof is collapsed and jagged.

I like to watch the fly fisherman

pluck rainbows from their hidden holes,

with a grace beyond my understanding.

And then, at sunset,

the creek and I head home.

 

Steven Deutsch

Steve Deutsch lives in State College, PA. His recent publications have or will appear in 8 Poems, Louisiana Lit, Burningword Literary Journal, The Write Launch, Biscuit Root Drive, Evening Street, Better Than Starbucks, Flashes of Brilliance, San Antonio Review, Softblow, Mojave River Review, The Broadkill Review, Linden Avenue Literary Journal, Panoply, Algebra of Owls, The Blue Nib, Thimble Magazine, The Muddy River Poetry Review, Ghost City Review, Borfski Press, Streetlight Press, Gravel, Literary Heist, Nixes Mate Review, Third Wednesday, Misfit Magazine, Word Fountain, Eclectica Magazine, The Drabble, New Verse News and The Ekphrastic Review. He was nominated for Pushcart Prizes in 2017 and 2018. His Chapbook, “Perhaps You Can,” was published in 2019 by Kelsay Press. His full length book, Persistence of Memory will be published by Kelsay in September 2020.

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