Thursday, July 26, 2007

Swimming Alone

She rode to the creek perched on a gray doughnut
wheel fender, shirtless, shoulders pink and freckled.
Father dropped her at the edge leaving her alone to swim.

Even at eight, the gliding waters draw her
to place her feet on a round granite stone, squatting,
clutching the smooth surface with bare mud caked toes.

She examines the water, a moving sheet of glass,
where waterbugs skate in scissor steps, fishes dart like fleas,
and crawdads crawl sideways, pinchers tucked, tails fanned.

Silver leafed beeches cut bright sunlight into mottled
shadows that spook the surface like a flashlight in dark woods
bouncing beams back and around and through the current.

Upstream and downstream the flow bends away.
She tries to think of where it came from and where it goes
after lapping past her, but the thought is too big.

The floor of the creek is brown velvet speckled with
sparkling mica that catches the fractured sunlight
and fires the illusion of gold into her eyes.

A finger swirls the skin of glass, she stands, jumps
feet up, bottom first, white panties smacking the surface
churning the wet world into mushroom clouds of mud.

In the field over the creek, the tractor chugs
cutting through green corn, blades of the combine
chopping and churning tender stalks into silage.

No comments: