The boy who towed fishing boat to campsite
through waist-deep water
studied astronomy but became a teacher
at Roberto Clemente Middle School in Harlem.
One morning he found a rat
dead a few feet from the school’s front steps.
He continues to lack the company
of sympathetic chess partners.
Tonight I have the dream where I tie the tow rope
to the branch of a tree I climb, rope tied to wrist.
I will climb the tree again when I need to climb.