Saturday, April 23, 2005

Poetry Break . . .

This poem is from about twenty years ago:

Water Witching

From deep wells, you must have drawn your anger,
Deeper than ever I could have dug them
In the brief time that I have known you well,
For water you so willingly provide
Is fresh and cold and mineral-laden,
What back home, in the Ozarks, we called hard.

Had I my grandma's gift of divining,
I should have uncovered the hidden source
Beneath the porous, hollow limestone rock
With the skillful work of a willow stick,
As with a power not my own, the branch
Would sniff the moisture out through its descent.

Thus knowing the lay of your lonely land
From the water-witching walk I'd made,
I'd lay myself in a silent hollow
And lowly and quietly, solemnly
Pray that a shift in underlying rock
Might change the ancient course the water takes.

There could a river freely burst from that
Fractured foundation stone, a mammoth spring
To carve the contours of its way along
The surface of the land, and in the depths
Of night, not earth, reflect the brilliant stars,
In pools so crisp, and so carefully wrought.

(H.J. Hodges, 1985)


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