What the River Knows
by Barbara F. Lefcowitz

    The river remembers nothing
    about the string of white pebbles
    that moments ago
    gleamed from the edge
    of the bank where I kneel.
    Nor does the river recall
    the splash of the child¹s shoe
    when it slipped from that bank
    the feel of its tongue
    that now licks the current
    bearing it downstream.
    The river knows nothing
    of its own water¹s shape
    how it spread briefly
    to hold my hand
    then reassumed its fluency
    which is all that it knows
    even as it rushes
    closing in on that place
    where kelly-green chemicals
    rest in beds of thick oil
    waiting to make their kill.






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