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After the Storm
Karen Vande Bossche

Snow geese fly north in pairs, flapping slowly over circling

packs of seagulls.  I forget to make my turn and wind

through an extra mile of road.  Out of a gully to my right

appears a boy, probably fourteen or so years old.

He carries the remains of a bicycle, wheels still

connected, but missing handle bars.  Pulled from 

his backpack is a small skateboard he places carefully 

under his left foot while trying to manipulate 

the headless bicycle, one hand on the front

fender, the other on the back. I pass him and continue

watching from my rearview mirror as the front wheel    

collapses and the skateboard shoots from under

his foot into the ditch.  I don’t stop, it wouldn’t matter,

but somehow I think of you, leaving this morning

before light. Leaving before you knew whether 

the road was clear of trees and downed power lines.

Karen Vande Bossche is a poet and short story writer who teaches middle school in Bellingham, Washington. She was born in Illinois, raised in California and is currently settled in the Pacific Northwest. Her publications are included in such journals as River Poets Anthology, Crack the Spine, Sweet Tree Review, Cirque and many others. Karen has been writing for over half a century and believes she has at least another half century worth of poems and stories to share.

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