Different Slants

Seeing the World from a New Angle

Passing Over The Root River During Passover

Filed under: Uncategorized — Bob at 2:46 pm on Sunday, April 2, 2023

by Robert M. Katzman © April 2, 2023


Long time ago

Passing over the Root River

During Passover

The muddy chocolate flowing

A fast-moving body of water

Morphing into a

Malted Milk Waterfall

Where the Old Mill used to be


I kept crossing

The persistent

 Jell-like River as

I attempted to traverse

Small Town Racine

A Serpentine-shaped

Creature of Nature

Preventing the smooth flow

Of people and cars

Trucks and buses

We were subjects of

The River


Our apprehensively choosing

To move up here

Moving from bright lights


A City with a Grid

Where uncountable cars


North, South, East and West

Like Rockets on Wheels

At least, until the Cops

Cooled their jets


Racine sternly

Tames the newcomer

“Adjust to Me

You flat-land City Slicker!”

Between circuitous streets

And ubiquitous stop signs

Thirty miles an hour

Is racing here


Racine has bluffs and ravines

A ravenous Lake Michigan

Voraciously chewing

Through its largest beach

Black skies which show us

The Star-studded Galaxy

Virtually no traffic at all

But so strangely to an

Untutored Newcomer

Stern-faced Cops

Armed for war


So much black body armor

To me they resembled

Ridged-Backed Snapping Turtles

As serious as

A city under siege

Guns and Tasers and Radios

First time I was stopped


Red & White & Blue

Lights blazing

Cop sternly told me

I was driving


Too slow


Confused and concerned

I told him my wife and I

Were desperately searching


Racine’s Last Synagogue

And the

Words on the street signs

Were much too small

For a couple of old people

To read in the blackness

Racine at night

Very much the

Dark-Side of the Moon


This complicated confession

To a stern member of

Racine’s Finest

Preceded by the

Fancy alien word:


In a town of 77,000 Christians

With maybe a dozen Jews

Stopped him cold


So, we were driving at a crawl

To a place he didn’t know

Two obviously disoriented


Squinting Senior Citizens


Stuck after dark


 Mysterious Racine


Where adorably petite


Street Signs


Un-illuminated after Sundown

The Cop was speechless

Flummoxed & Uncertain

What law we were breaking

We waited

He contemplated



At last deciding

We were too pathetic

To detain for anything

Our first-time Racine Cop

Put away his ticket book

Said: “Ok, you can go now

But try to drive a little faster

Next time you visit here”

And at last he smiled



My wrinkly Bride and I


Way more than

A century old

Simultaneously mused

That No Cop

No Where, at No Time

Had ever warned

Either of us

To be careful and to drive faster

On the slender town streets

Our maiden voyage

Into lovely

Racine, Wisconsin


(The above story, from 2015, is true)



Comment by Brad Dechter

April 2, 2023 @ 5:09 pm

Great imagery, positive ending and fun story!
Thought it was well done- not that I deserve critic status.
Thanks for sharing!

Comment by Charlie

April 2, 2023 @ 8:50 pm

The Siskel Ebert 2 thumbs up…as usual!

Comment by David Griesemer

May 30, 2023 @ 6:09 pm

“To be careful and to drive faster…”

A contradiction anywhere but in Racine.

Laughed my head off.

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