I long for the sounds of wind and water
the evernew refreshment of rain
in a run and fall from leaves or between
yellow bulbs of pitch in decoration.
Sparking remnants of sun, it collapses
to lady's slipper and seeps
through blue mesh of my mother's water shoes
I borrowed for this sojourn
into my memory of this once home.
I hear the river before me, choking,
stumbling in delirious laughter over every stone
he would have known had I not
misplaced them as a child
into the middle
where I could not reach but to swim
and could not swim for the current
that would pull me beneath to witness
my indiscretion before my drowning.
I feared it, rode it's back in my father's black canoe
in the terror of tipping, meeting the unpredictability
of waves. My tiny paddle useless and dependent
on father and mother's strength
to carry me on.
The runoff has ceased but the river is high
with the stupor of latesummer showers.
Standing too far back from the bank to distort
his running I hear him sing to me. His children,
borne miles in cloud mists dust on to my face,
in an effort to be spellbound, and I let them.
River calls me harder but I turn and pull the ropes
my father throws to me, and instead
I set up a tree stand with my dad.