A River to Swim Across - Judy DeCroce

And then I realized even in the telling,
towards the truth, but not so surely —
the dark water calling, the far shore along way across,
till my someday arrived.

Swimming, swimming past the rope’s marker,
deeper and beyond. Father ahead, father beside,
father’s words a buoy, finally finding that boulder
— a landing, found for me.

Hard breaths, heart pumping — I did it — we did it,
made a memory…a good one at last.

for Dad

First published in Halfway Down the Stairs, December, 2019

Once upon a time Judy DeCroce left her five-year sickbed and rejoined her life. Her favorite aunt, playmate, and storyteller, (during this time,) always allowed her to be the hero of every story. Now what?…  a veterinarian, an archeologist, perhaps a secretary (though she couldn’t type.) No, a teacher and a storyteller, (though perhaps Edgar Allen Poe’s, “A Telltale Heart” was not a good choice as her first story to second graders). Judy taught and loved it for thirty-two years, and now teaches children the art of storytelling. In retirement, some told stories morphed into Flash fiction. And then with her husband reading poetry aloud every morning, she began to write. A publisher liked her work, then another, till encouragement was worldwide. Now, a first book collaboration, The Posture of Trees. Who knows what’s next? But you should know she’s living happily ever after in upstate New York.