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Poetry

41

Cast a rod into the pond; fish swim forth and stay.

Thirteen years ago, I wrote a poem titled “Fish Swim Forth and Stay.” It was a nod to childhood when I would secretly follow my friends Robbie and Jeremiah to the pond where they fished. Robbie and Jeremiah were like peanut butter and jelly growing up. You didn’t think of one without the other.

May 8, 2007 would have marked the twenty eighth birthday of my friend Jeremiah. Jeremiah never made it to twenty eight. He passed away a few months short from brain cancer. Sometimes I like to think he made it to twenty eight, to twenty nine, and beyond . . . that he’s happily married and has kids, and that we all still find time to hang out regardless of what life throws our way. Perhaps we’d even go fishing.

Today, Jeremiah would have turned forty one years old. Happy birthday dude.

FISH SWIM FORTH AND STAY

O gentle creature, friend of mine—come hear the words I say:
Cast a rod into the pond; fish swim forth and stay
Reflections pass and tear descend, rippling away
Forty one years young you’d be on this beloved day.

Photo by Deniz Fuchidzhiev on Unsplash

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By Jeffrey Pillow

Jeffrey Pillow is an American short story writer, memoirist, and poet. He is the author of The Lady Next Door. His writing has been published in Urge Magazine, The Nervous Breakdown, 16 Blocks, USA Today, Sports Illustrated, TheBody.com, New York Times, Washington Post, and Richmond Times-Dispatch.

He grew up in the small town of Phenix, Virginia, population: 200, and now lives in Charlottesville with his wife, two kids, and a dog named Mozzarella Cheese. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia where he was a Rainey Scholar. This is his blog.

3 replies on “41”

Love this Jeff! My brother would have been 63 this past Wednesday. He was killed in a bike accident when he was 15. I think about what it would be like if he had survived the accident. Thank you!!

That’s very tragic. I’m sorry your brother was taken so young. I’m sure he would have grown up to be a good man just like you. Good to hear from you Bill. Hope you’re well.

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