The Name in the River: Photo-poem by Catherine

Window Art by Natu Patel, Humberwood Library
Window Art by Natu Patel, Humberwood Library

She kneels before the river,

the ankles of her snow boots resting on the bench-edge.

Beside her, The Lightning Thief, three mysteries, Brave,

and a packet of cheese crackers make a small tower.

Window Art by Natu Patel, Humberwood Library
Window Art by Natu Patel, Humberwood Library

Ignoring the crackers,

she watches the deer who sniffs the air for danger

before dipping its head in the river.

She wants to swim downstream in grey and blue

where the water’s wild direction drops from sight.

IMG_3775
Window Art by Natu Patel, Humberwood Library

She turns to watch the librarian busy with the Holds cart

and then etches the name Alia into the river with her fingernail.

Alia knows it is not allowed,

but she obeys an inner devotion

to a moving sanctuary, an altar of water.

Alia writes her name in the river

because it calls her daughter.

Alia dives into her river,

ancient gills awakening to underwater life.

The river’s name is Alia

and it carries the kneeling girl home.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.