Maren O. Mitchell

Watching Water

At home heavy rain blurs all that is not here,
insulates us from all that is not of our time, 

each drop within hearing plays a cell in our cocoon, 
yet I can hear ants, chased by water bombs,

thundering back into their tunnels that lead to roots;
while, on our windshield, drops spread symmetrically,

explode into chandeliers, damp staccato fireworks,
plus, centers hold, wiggle down, move time

by bets on which rivulet joins which—free
entertainment, free car wash; but, I prefer

to watch a mountain creek: it begins in secret,
tells no one, springs out,

never stops, juggles water through harmonica rocks,
fits collage of fish backs and lit minerals,

calls to follow to the river, the lake, another river,
to witness the salty hands of surf

pushing against earth’s dry rim,
the surf that does not tire

of repeating the same story from before
to the end of this cooling planet.


Maren O. Mitchell’s poems have appeared in Poetry East, Appalachian Heritage, Tar River Poetry, Southern Humanities Review, Appalachian Journal, such anthologies as The Crafty Poet II, The World Is Charged: Poetic Engagements with Gerard Manley Hopkins, and The Southern Poetry Anthologies, V & VII and elsewhere. Work is forthcoming in Slant: A Journal of Poems, Chiron Review, and Hotel Amerika. Her nonfiction book is Beat Chronic Pain, An Insider’s Guide (Line of Sight Press, 2012). Maren lives with her husband in the mountains of north Georgia.


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