Magazine August 26, 2019, Issue

On the Water

(Darrin Zammit Lupi/Reuters)

The heron rises overhead,
As we push off the reeded shore
With our one cracked, muck-covered oar,
Onto the pond’s unstirring bed.

Bullfrogs rest, snapping in the weeds
Just where, last summer, we found rotten
Tackle, by fishermen forgotten
As they passed on to other needs.

I know, not far away, the world
Despairs of rotten church and state
And finds less cause for love than hate,
Its once brave flags now torn and furled.

I know as well, it was while hidden
And thinking their room locked and bare
That the apostles felt flamed air
Send them to do as they were bidden.

The bright orange sides of koi slip by
Obscured beneath the murky glass,
And

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