Monday, March 26, 2012

Spring Morning on the River

The sharp, musty smell of the river in spring
makes me tipsy with plans for trips 
and long, slow rides along the river's banks 
where the trees hang low, their leaves
teasing me with sensuous strokes of my face
as the boat drifts in their shade.

I lean on the boat's rail and take in 
the morning fog, so dense 
I can't see the bank where we are tied. 
The fog hangs idly at the water's surface, suspended,
until the sun rises from behind the hills.
It swirls around me as I sweep the deck,
wrapping me in a veil of clouds
where I stand, unseen, to watch
the shadowed forms of geese as they fly upriver.
The beating of their wings buffets the air
as they pass, murmuring among themselves,
telling goose stories, instructing - who knows?
They tilt their wings, drop their feet and
land, Boosh! in the water,
their webbed black feet acting as brakes,
to create little crystal wakes.
They dip their heads in the water, 
bobbing warily as they paddle around then, 
at some unseen signal, are off again
disappearing into the fog as if erased
by an unseen hand.

I take my camera and sit at the end
of the dock, near Belle's sternwheel,
to watch the sun rise over the hills,
casting its bright rays into the purple 
shadows along the banks.
The fog rises from the river, 
a bright pink and gold mist, 
as across the way Nancy Ann
gleams white against the tree line.
The sun breaks through the trees nearby,
making a pool of golden light. 
Just beyond a heron dives for food, then 
making an awkward ascent, 
wings and legs akimbo and streaming water, 
he leaves the river with his catch.

Sounds of vehicles on the road
a hundred yards away F150s, 
their tires thrumming on the asphalt, 
begin to break through the quiet.
The aroma of fresh coffee wafts 
from the boat, and I go inside
to begin another dream.

Happy Birthday, Kid!

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