The Flood

We doubted the water would come
and slept without clothes—
the privilege of the blithe and warm.

Valuables left down low,
we slept, sure four miles
of rising plains would swallow

the river, its tossled snakes
and mountain limbs, long
before it swallowed ours.

You folded into night and me,
Scant light, our fragile boat.
Uneasy waking, 3 a.m.—

highway and house
without a hum. No semis.
No power. No water pump.

(Proud child of apocalypse, I had filled
the jugs despite your gentle jibe,
Oh, baby, we won’t lose electricity.)

Curiosity dressed and drove
us to the bridge they wouldn’t let us see.
Fat men and flashing sent us home.

We never saw it rise, love, but of course it rose
a mile wide. Next morning, yesterday’s
unconcerned cows grazed on higher ground.

I only dreamed it dark and slow,
inching up the edges of my low-banked
mind, the cool swell eating my

silent roads and fish bone shores,
forcing us north of the river, of towns—
for three days, bridgeless, blessed.

Drinking from the hard well,
Love wrung out our water
while others fell and homes molded

one hundred miles west.
I’m not sorry they were blissful days.
Is that horrible to say?

2013

One Response to “The Flood”

  1. Fey says:

    I saw it too, inching slowly toward my high hill.
    Protected, though, was I by my arch nemesis
    the towers of Sugar.
    Beet back the waters.
    Silent, so silently disaster whispers its way.

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