Writing selections

Manmade Lake

A poem also published on www.versewrights.com

for KLJ

Crossing the Texan plain in September,

in the back of a Ford with my sister and folks,

windows wide open to catch the hot breezes

that whistle like freight trains from the horizon,

I hear our mother whisper to father,

“Soon, all this will be underwater.”

My sister and I are astonished to silence:

the sun-bleached sky gives no sign of moisture.

Will Noah’s flood now reach into Texas,

the day of retribution at last (thank you Jesus),

and our parents again keeping it from us?

A dragonfly shimmers, or is it a minnow?

That buzzard, who floats without any tether,

might be a seagull, searching for trash.

Those cattle—they’ll drown, their brown eyes like bubbles,

panicked and rolling around and around.

These scrawny trees will be waving like seaweed

and the tumbleweeds turn into prickly blowfish.

Now, everything opens to change:

deserts can be oceans and rivers run dry,

valleys slice through the unsteady earth.

We whisper together in the back seat,

urging the old Ford to flee toward home:

Lord, none but you can save us.

Your yellow eye watches.

We sweat as we pray,

please, please, don’t send the rains.