Yes, There is a River

A careless turbulence that
rushes to the high desert.
From mountain streams
and melted snow
And now,  past overcrowded cities
despoiled and merciless.

The water once clear, chilled
and untampered with.

But with high desert comes heat,
indifferent gorges that channel
the incorrigible river.
Deterred here and there by
obstructionist mountains
that are not impressed
by town meetings or debates
to negotiate with a river.

Fresh starts are loaded
with sand and silt.

Soon the great river
sinks from view.
To all appearances - gone.
Caught up in canyons
inaccessible to men.
Nothing to vote for.

And the struggle reverts
to survival without water.
No political wisdom supplants
the missing river.  Needs, just
a simplistic yet nomadic
search for water.

Unexpectedly emerging
in narrow valleys
with a wealth of cottonwood,
willow and pasture land.
And the culture by
which civilization is measured
The great river is found again,
and lost in a few short miles of time.

Men and horses wander for days
searching ahead for the wagons
that followed. At last,
throwing themselves on the water.
their horses drank till their skins split
or out too far, they drowned.

Yet no one seems to remember
Years later they must search again
for the wily river that makes
civic virtue possible.


If you've any comments on this poem L.Fullington would be pleased to hear from you.

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