Ode to River

The river knows all.
Swift or sluggish,
Swelled or shrunken.
It is versed in the wisdom of the earth –
In the song of the wind as it rustles the foliage,
In the scraping of overlapped branches,
In the crunch of trodden twigs,
In the dance of flowers and the pungency of ripe and rotting fruit.
It has babbled in the speckled light of evening sun through the trees.
It has seen the storm and swelled to meet it.
It has borne the snow, offered its surface to the winter wind, become a smooth sheet of ice,
Waiting for the embrace of spring sunshine
Before cracking, ear-splitting and thunderous,
To reclaim its form,
Regain its flow.
Its depths flavored with the salt of tears, with the rot of plant matter, with the cloying earthiness of mud, with fossil fragment and algal slime.
Tread lightly on its banks;
Pay respect to
Wisdom eternal.

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