Saturday, November 30, 2013

Daily Prompt: Love and Rivers

I learned to love rivers growing up in Washington, D.C. in the 1970s and 1980s. I'd ride my bike to and along the Potomac; the wide slowness of the river through town invited daydreams. Sometimes I paddled the river in a canoe with my brother, father or friends. More recently, my brother and sister-in-law took me stand-up paddling to the Three Sisters rocks upstream from Key Bridge. 

Sacramento, where I live now, holds two rivers. It's not hard to imagine the history that has flowed along the city's namesake through Old Town. The American is wilder and where I go to see white-tailed kites flap and glide as they hunt insects on the wing. 

This poem, "Love Poem," seems like a poem about the love among people, and it is. But the poem could not have come into being without having loved rivers first.

Love Poem
Love came not too late to appreciate
the step at the back door that says
I’m home. Corners have changed. Before
everything was angles. Now rooms’ edges
dissolve in companionship as embraces wake
up milled wood of the building’s frame,
stir wires that link bulbs and sockets
to a power source way, way up the hill
where a dam seals a river as
landscape’s sacrifice for this feeling.
- Alexa Mergen, poem previously published in Foundling Review

Daily Prompt:  Write a love poem for someone, your own love or another's. Include an element of geography, too.

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