By Lex Vacilando 

The leaves are green and still the geese
are suddenly back overnight, hundreds
on the lagoon and my grandfather is dying
in Pittsburgh, weaker each day like September sun.

Somewhere 50 miles out of the city
in an old company house on a hill
someone new sleeps in his childhood bedroom,
has the same dreams in a different order.

I whistle and one goose shudders on the water
causing his family to take to the sky.
Exodus and “just running to the store”
feel the same
when you find yourself alone.

We do not keep the water we drink.
We do not leave the places we’ve swam.
On the bank rimming the glassy water, I stumble
catch myself and walk away.

Fall sun on moving water, please protect all
the things that come, stay and leave.
I grew up tall and strong but that’s says nothing
of the heart.

Lex Vacilando lives in the Indiana Dunes. So far, Mr. Vacilando has swam in 246 bodies of water, both big and small, and hopes to live long enough to make that number an even 1000.