THE HUDSON, Carey Danielle Rasmus

          i am from
          (the hudson, part I)
          by Carey Danielle Rasmus
i am from a city on the hudson
          trees envy me
     because i walk with the legs they dream of

this river is like sap in my veins
     rooting me
          to this land
     touching me
          with beauty
     chaining me
          with invisible threads

my prayers go out to the river
dropping like child thrown pebbles
     and then forgotten
          as waves devour the ripples
          of my concern

i envy the trees the simplicity
     of their capture
     they need the land until death calls
     there is no question
          only dreams

i have the possibility of distancing myself
     the physical     foot     follows foot     ability

but my roots dig far into this soil
clenching at bedrock
refusing to give me wings
          (the hudson, part II)

the problem with poetry is that
          the truth changes
there was a time i wrote about the hudson
     and how it was the blood in my veins
          how i couldn’t leave its banks
          how it held me there

it was truth
i ricocheted
     away and back
ebbing and flowing like its tides

it     was     truth

but my truth has changed
     i have aged and moved
          i am 3000 miles distant
and cannot go back

what was once life-sustaining
     feels more like poison
     tainting me still
     breaking down my shores and sanity
          breaking down my self

this is my truth
i haven’t lied
it’s just that     the truth
          is tidal
Carey Danielle Rasmus is a special education teacher who specializes in at-risk adolescents. She now lives in the San Francisco bay area with her husband, son, and two cats. She grew up in the Hudson Valley of New York state.


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