Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, AT THE SAND CREEK BRIDGE, by JAMES GALVIN

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

AT THE SAND CREEK BRIDGE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: The path of most insistence
Subject(s): Fish & Fishing; Guns; Mountains; Nature; Rivers; Trout; Anglers; Hills; Downs (great Britain)

The path of most insistence
Constrains the creek
Where it spools
And rummages through
Its darkest secrets
And the mooncolored trout revolve.
If it's been a long time coming
It'll be a long time gone.
Or so I think, watching it
Neither hurry nor tarry
Through spills and basins
I used to climb among
With a fly rod between my teeth,
And may again
If life is long.
Now I'm content to idle
The truck on the bridge
As the pines offer
Their shadows to water.
I can still remember
A few things.
The years I wasted fishing
Down here.
Cold rock under fingertips
And the smell of willow early.
The lapidary green
Of the little snake
Who swims like water in water.
The sun getting hotter
On my shoulders,
My feet in the current
Going numb.
Once I stood on the canyon rim
And hurled boulders
One after another down,
To boom and ricochet,
To make the shadows speak.
There was no one anywhere
To hear the canyon's utterance
Or how the quiet rushed back hard
When I stopped,
My loneliness complete,
The smell of gunpowder
In the air.

Used with the permission of Copper Canyon Press, P.O. Box 271, Port Townsend, WA
98368-0271, www.cc.press.org

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