Monday, March 30, 2015

The Virgin

Weird any rivers persist at all,
Rain, snow, and mountains notwithstanding.
Stand by this purling crick in winter

And look up from dry earth to dry cliffs
Looming as if peering down valley,
Wondering where that trickling came from,

Incontinent elders of desert.
Someone must have a mind of water,
And suspicion falls on the tallest,

The stone-faced monument squatting down
Among the smaller mountains to squeeze
This thin stream from between those great knees.

Innocent. Water always belongs
To gravity, and if the fury
Of gravity great enough for fire

Raises it up as steam, gravity
Belonging to lesser purity
Pulls it back down to earth. The sacred

And the profane, so went scholarly
Convention, were the same to the monks
Who transcribed bawdy vernacular

Songs on their scriptorial margins,
Little notes praising spring flatulence
Among the hornier animals.

We hate our elders to remind us
Sap rises from cracked rocks. But it does
And falls. Summer is icumen in.

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