Jan/Feb 2011 Poetry


by Jed Myers


Home's river,
     you and your two roads
ever pretending
     to disappear inside
your hillsides of trees,
     I know

you're there, held in those
     low walls, stones
hauled from the brush
     and sycamore shadows
by men who soon
     turned to ghosts—

I can still smell
     the mud of your shallows
from here, a continent
     and forty years
west. And watch
     the wind lose your skin

where you enter the vertical
     canyon, museum and
train station,
     your motion un-
detectible under
     the Market St. bridge.

I can still shiver
     at how you lured me
out on the narrow
     trestle span
that summer day
     when the line still ran.

And somewhere up
     in the hills you come from
in those hundred-odd
     dreams you've drifted
between my ears,
     there's a trail

I find again,
     cross you on
its granite stones
     toward a wooded mountain
where I know to look
     for what's forgotten—

who I was
     before the water-
shed of birth,
     when I was
as of the earth
     as you, even

down where you bend
     past Penn's stadium,
the airport exit,
     collect a thousand
translucent plastic
     islands, down

a whole long life
     from your source, your last
catfish nesting
     snug in the clay
by the oil refinery,
     where finally

you fan out,
     past the abandoned
gypsum plant
     and garish funereal
auto scrap banks,
     into nameless

slicked marshes,
     where you die
amid grasses tall
     as men, giving
your body away
     to the Delaware.


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