Monday, October 12, 2015

McKenzie River

She bubbles from Cascade crest,
then bounces through canyons
down, down –
cold and sweet and pure.

I traveled the length of her
uncounted times,
rounded every curve as
my heart danced to her music,
and names of camp and trail
and waterfall,
sang in my mind –

For fifty years, she flowed from my tap
and I drank her straight.

Then I abandoned her,
sought sun and sea
and tried to forget.

Yet here, seven hundred
miles south – where I squint
in white brightness,
watch lakes evaporate and
bare peaks shimmer with heat –
even here, the taste of her
lingers on my tongue
and lures me back.