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On The River

On The River

Crystal green flows beneath me,
Leafy arches rise above,
  Dip, glide.
     Dip, glide.
          Slide.

Duckweed parts as I float by.
I wonder where they went,
Those ducks?
Gone overnight, it seems.
Another parting, another loss,
And I slide by,
Under all that green.
  Dip, glide.
     Dip, glide.

Just there, in deepest shade,
Sleeping emeralds cling.
Tree frogs rest in their
Smooth, damp skins
Waiting for the silver moon.
They’ll open their eyes for the silver moon.
Sleeping now,
As I pass by.
  Dip, glide.
     Dip, glide.

With arms raised to that same moon,
I once danced along the shore,
Young and wild and full of joy.
Moving to music
That stirred my soul,
And washed in that pale light,
I danced.
Years ago, in that pale, pale light.
I remember it all,
And so much more,
As I slide by.
  Dip, glide.
     Dip, glide.

A scaled ribbon of vivid lime
Scribbles across my bow,
Curving by in his own silent slide.
I smile at Dickinson’s “narrow fellow”
Tasting the air with his tongue of flame.
I feel no “zero at the bone” for him,
For I have known far worse than he,
And survived.
With a nod of my head,
I pass him, too.
And on I go.
  Dip, glide.
     Dip, glide.

Time and time and time goes by,
And still, green fronds protect me from above,
Green water lifts me from below,
Carrying me ceaselessly on my way.
Slower, now that Youth is gone,
Yet, sometimes a froth of foam and spray
Reminds me of those early days,
When all the water rushed clear and cold,
And teemed with Promise so bright
You could almost catch it in your hands.
That bubbling spring where it all began,
Now lies so far behind.
Far behind, and long ago,
While I move on.
  Dip, glide.
     Dip, glide.

Always forward,
One stroke at a time,
The only path from Here to There.
One stroke following another,
And I, all the while,
Still cherish the trees above,
The water below.
I wonder as a turn grows near,
What adventures wait beyond the bend?
Will they make my heart beat fast again?
How many shimmering curves lie before me yet?
How long does my river flow?
  Dip, glide.
     Dip, glide.
          Dip, glide.
              Slide.

                          –Marcia Meara

4 thoughts on “On The River

  1. Beautiful.

    Like

  2. It’s a wonderful poem 🙂

    Like

    • Thank you, Francois! That’s very kind of you. I’ve been “on the river” a long time now, but I hope I still have lots of curves ahead, each hiding a new surprise. I plan to keep paddling for a long, long time, if possible. Dip, glide, slide…….

      Like

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