Not the melody we expected
at the creek’s edge, rather an ugly
silence clogged with sheets and tubes
of sycamore bark, the stopped drift
of sweet gum balls and cottonwood fluff,
mud-dried globs of twigs and leaves,
feathers, thin bones of whatever, and always
the human dross.
Easy to cross this un-
wanted shortcut while preferring the long
way around to the singing duo of rock and water.
A retired teacher of English and photography, Roger Pfingston is the recipient of a Poetry Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and two PEN Syndicated Fiction Awards. He is the author of Something Iridescent, a collection of poetry and fiction, as well as five chapbooks, the most recent being What’s Given, available from Kattywompus Press.