Ritual Bath
by Bernice Lewis

In ten minutes, the sun will round that corner and hit this deep pool
changing mysterious brown water to bubbling translucency

one end of the long sloping granite wall sits in the creek
a pool of broken sandstone at its feet
a dipping bird dancing at it’s edge

the other side is mud and marshy reeds
settled silt, mosses
an undercut bank of rounded stones
a tiny reflecting pool

one large red rock blocks the entrance
creating current

I wait for the right moment to dive in
to feel the jolt of spring snowmelt
tumbling tumbling tumbling over warm red rock,
peeling the first layer of winter from my skin

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