the big silver swim RSS

the big silver swim

21 April, 2016: the big silver swim


by Wendy Shaffer

The Big Silver Swim

big grey fish are swimming
across the sky
and I know they like it
their long bodies pushing
past the white
to a more crowded place
where silver skin slides
beside silver skin
fins and gills touching
some people call this winter
in cleveland
and talk about
but I feel like the fish
flying through the sky
to be so close
to the light
to be moving
between live bodies
“The Big Silver Swim” by Wendy Shaffer from 22 YEARS. The City Poetry in collaboration with Nirala Publications, 2010. Used by permission of the author.
Wendy Shaffer is a native Clevelander living on the west side in the Stockyards area with her brother, their dog, and many cats. She has a BFA in writing from Carnegie Mellon University and an MFA in writing from Bowling Green State University. She’s been running a writer’s workshop for over 15 years. Wendy started writing at the age of seven and continues to write, share her poems, and perform. She is currently an administrative assistant at a sign company in Midtown Cleveland.


Write a poem that personifies the month of April without using any seasonal imagery and without stating “April” or “spring.”

Psyche North Torok
with the temperament of
a four year old,

having fits, not giving
a damn how loudly
you shriek or how many
doors you slam,

how is it you
turn that
around and suddenly

offering the gifts of sweet breath,
vibrant song,
the appetite quickening?
4/21/2016 10:23:14 PM

READ + WRITE: 30 Days of Poetry is a collaboration between Cuyahoga County Public Library and poet Diane Kendig. Our thanks go to Diane and the poets of Northeast Ohio who allowed us to share their poetry.