Thursday, April 07, 2011

April Showers Bring...

Photo from Magpie Tales


Watching the Flood

The water is rising
and the wind, ruffling
the river’s surface. Hard down from
the north the water pours,
from Muddy Pond, from the Williams,
the Green, and the Konkapot,
from snowmelt and
lashing rain, until the banks
of the Housie disappear beneath
mad swirls of foam-specked brown.

Like a furious dragon the water
leaps, dashing itself against
the bridge, its tail lashing
the abutments, its sinuous body eddying
over banks and around trees,
tumbling rocks and bits of flotsam
down, down to where I stand,

my back to the bullying wind,
watching the watery beast
devour cornfields, the rock bridge,
the wetlands and swamps,
and now the road beneath my feet.

17 comments:

steven said...

my very best dreams and metaphors are all connected to rivers. i'm respectful of water and grateful for this gorgeous unpacking of the housie (the housatonic?). steven

Pauline said...

Yes, Steve, it's the Housatonic River which runs right through the town I live in. Glad you liked the poem.

Brian Miller said...

the allusion to a dragon is potent...having lived through a few floods, i have faced the dragon....

steven said...

pauline i ask because one of my forever and always favourite pieces of music is the housatonic at stockbridge by charles ives. i first heard it when i was fourteen and have been damaged goods ever since!!! steven

HyperCRYPTICal said...

Brilliant - you really paint a picture!

Anna :o]

Judith said...

Is this happening NOW? Or is the poem from the past? Because if it's now, it's so crazy for me to think of where you are, you and the dragon water, while I'm here in the desert where there are almost no blooms this year because there's been no rain, hence no water!
What a huge diverse world we live in ---

Pauline said...

Brian - the water was sinuous - it looked so like some huge, watery reptile

Steven - I've never heard that piece of music!

Thanks, Anna :)

J - no, the floods were weeks ago. It takes a while sometimes to capture things in words ;)

Tabor said...

I really like this poem. Had to read it twice to make sure I felt it all...lots of energy there.

Peter Bryenton said...

I once stood on the banks of that Dragon river and saw the paper mill where fine art photo printing materials were made.

Isabel Doyle said...

lovely river-dream-dragon

oh to have weather!

June said...

The poem is a picture, but the names nourish me. All those good old Native American names.

Pauline said...

Thanks Tabor - I'm glad it struck you that way.

I hope you come back and stand beside it again B. I have been asked to contribute a poem to the dedication of the covered bridge that spans the Housie near my house. There will be a dedication ceremony in May.

Thanks Isabel - do you not have weather where you are?

June - we are in the heart of once-Native American land. A pity that all that's left are the names.

Arian Tejano said...

"the wind, ruffling
the river’s surface"

what a beautiful, passing image.

Reya Mellicker said...

Brother wind is definitely a bully.

What a poem. Gave me the shivers. You certainly do have a powerful relationship with the weather gods and landscape.

Donna B said...

What an image you conjure up! The unstoppable power of a raging river could very well be like attempting to fight a dragon...beautifully written...

Steve Isaak said...

Love the bustling tone and references/flow of this. Good piece!

Pauline said...

Arian - thanks for visiting. A river is always a passing image...

Reya - I have lived among them all my life..

Thank you Donna!

Steve - Thanks for coming by to read and comment.