Skipping into the Dark
The tide's slipping out tonight. In the west,
Venus romances the grail moon.
My nine-year-old son stands silhouetted,
their skittering making the lights across Casco
squiggle in the water.
An hour ago, between bites of mashed potatoes,
we hooted at his younger sister,
who has learned how to hang a spoon from her
Without looking up,
he announced in a flat-water voice,
I am going to die.
Only his sister could speak: That's
You're too little to die.
After each toss he cocks his head, listens
for a satisfying succession of skips.
I can't see his expression any more
than I can see the future,
cannot know what he bears within
his fluid frame.
I can only watch him stoop at the water's edge,
choose a glazed stone
and hurl it as far as he can
into the veiled night.
A graduate of the
University of Southern Maine's Stonecoast MFA program, David Sloan teaches
English in Maine's only Waldorf high school. He is the author of two
books on teaching teenagers. His poetry has appeared, or is forthcoming,
in The Broome Review, The Café Review, Carpe Articulum, The Naugatuck River
Review, The Northern New England Review, Passager, and The Prairie Wolf
Press Review, among others, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.