Same As They Always Have

Spring Shoreline

On the creeks and rivers,
most of the ice has broken up
and moved idly downstream
like a weekend sailor floating
without care as it appears
the homes along the banks
are the moving ones. Sometimes,
the broken pieces will collect
in the narrows. But the waters
never stop, and will push against
the ice dams and bulge backward
over the banks, flooding the same
as they always have.
The pulsing Saranac or Mohawk,
the Black or Schoharie will
hemorrhage their riparian blood
over farm and field until the dams
break and the waters recede to
their courses. I’d walk the banks
then, observing how upriver
shore flotsam have run aground
and woven baskets of natural hand work.
That’s the rivers’ art, never stopping
to admire or regret what they’ve
crafted for good or ill. They’ll
slap their waves upon the shore
and move on, same as they always have.

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