Kelly Cherry

Lake Rosseau, Canada

Volume 16:1, Winter 2015
Sonnet Issue

Lake Rosseau, Canada

When we reached the rented summer house we found
chipmunks had set up camp in the large kitchen

Quicksand could swallow you, legs and arrns and all,
especially if you were a child and a girl-child at that

Leeches latched onto us girls’ arms and legs
and were to be pulled off immediately

The green rowboat sidled into reeds
or cattails, ferrying sisters on splintery plank seats

On land we sisters took turns climbing into
the washtub to roll sideways down the piney slope

The resinous pines quickened the air and pine
needles fell, a snug blanket over the hills

Nights, the cry of the loon crossed over water.
You could tell the man in the moon had a secret.


Kelly Cherry is a former Poet Laureate of Virginia. She serves on the electorate of Poets Corner at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Cherry has published 22 full-length books (9 of poetry), 9 chapbooks, and 2 translations of classical drama. She is Eudora Welty Professor Emerita of English and Evjue-Bascom Professor Emerita in the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.