Slippery Rock

There is a rock
you can slide, standing up
into the water
flat, smooth, algae-covered
the grand, slippery rock
sinking into the current

Slide until the power
the depth
the force
pushes your feet away
into the deeper water
across the whirlpools
that pretend to threaten
Swim back
summer sun,
goose-bumped skin

Who can slide the furthest,
escape the current,
climb back on the rock
and slide again?
Pushing, pulling
sliding, cheating,
angry until you start laughing
We are brothers, all of us.

The suckers
sit on the bottom
in the deeper water below
We watch them
for awhile
then drop stones, bored with
unmoving fish
cleaning our dropped stones

The sun dips under the branches
we know it is time
but find reasons to
slide again,
then walk our towels to our bikes
still wanting to never leave
or the day to never end
like you miss the train
when you don’t want to go home.

They placed a fence there
the government
the property owner
lawyer fed
innocence defiled
No one drowned
No one died
One day someone just said, “Mine!”

I drive slow across the bridge
when traffic allows
eyes searching
for slippery rock,
the old landscapes
the fence holes,
secret paths,
laughter and playful danger-
first slider
clearing out the water snakes.
“Odds or Evens
One, Two, Three, Shoot
Best out of three?”

Giving chase in a stopped car
to memories
while irritated drivers
shout profanities
honk, punch their dash
and put up
no trespassing signs
on their front lawns.

have been in control
of the rock for too long.
Stop inviting them back in.
Chase them out.

Slippery Rock


Portland, United States

  • Artwork Comments 2

Artwork Comments

  • kromwellfarkus
  • fishfire
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