Issue 23 | Fall 2019

Walking by the lake, after studying Torah

        And Jacob woke from his sleep and said …this is the gateway to the sky.

        —Genesis 28:16-17


From days inside as if

underwater light, the worked

tissue of verses: onto a lake


trail, into almost snow. Collapsed

cattail husks, bare willow,

a wooden ladder drifts up


through the straying branches. Time

slowed down by the quiet almost

until we’re holding our


breath. Here in a spot with oil

on the stones, ice skin on little

puddles, a glitter surprised on the ground.

Filed under: Poetry

Dan Alter’s poems have been published in journals including Field, Fourteen Hills, Pank, and Zyzzyva; his first collection My Little Book of Exiles is forthcoming from Eyewear Press. He lives with his wife and daughter in Berkeley and makes his living as an electrician. He can be found online at