Magic Mirror

Sky reflected in wetlands

“Mirror, Mirror, shining bright,
in that river to my right,
who’s the fairest in the land?”
River winked at Meadowland:
“You are, fairest lady Sky,
“whether you are wet or dry.”

“Best to keep her happy, dear,
else we’ll dry to dust this year,”
Meadowland agreed with River.
Then Cherry Tree gave a shiver:
“Silence, she might hear you, fools,
you know it’s Lady Sky that rules.”

Copyright 2015 Brenda Davis Harsham

Vermont River Wishes

Moody Sky at river

Clouds framed a glaring window,
where the sun failed to shine.
Winds loosed a hailstorm of pine cones.
The icy river churned and burbled,
depositing silt onto smooth stones.
Upriver, the dam released water slowly.
The waterfall below demanded rain,
but it lay heavy in the black clouds.

Quechee Gorge and Dam
A few drops spattered in the gorge,
unnoticed by waders in the flats.
The river shrugged smooth shoulders,
showing its sharp granite bones.
Children chased fish downriver,
while parents soaked tired feet,
listening for thunder and
dreading the long climb out.
Canoers beached their boats,
donned yellow lifejackets,
and floated around the rapids,
bobbing in the slow side current.
Children pointed, laughed,
and longed to be in the thick of it.
I am the children. I am the river.
I am black clouds longing for release.

Ottauquechee River

Copyright 2015 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: These photographs are of Quechee Gorge and Ottauquechee River, Vermont.

Covered Bridge

IMG_5398

River rambles and curves,
shallow then deep,
rocky or smooth,
changeable as the weather.
Under the bridge are dark places,
deep pools with hidden depths.
The biggest fish hide there.
Aquatic plants sway
in the current, roots unseen.
The burbling water
covers whispers made, but
sounds echo above,
in the dim covered bridge,
where magic dwells.
Gossamer webs hold fast
lingering traces of lovers past.
Children, clapping hands
and believing in fairies,
once danced here.
Their shadows remain
sweetening the breezes.

Copyright 2015 Brenda Davis Harsham

Red Covered Bridge

Note: These photographs were taken in New Hampshire in the White Mountains.

River Drifting

Water Lily

River blooms green
Between water lily stars.
Swans nibble
Tender water moss
While minnows
Dart amid the bobbing
Carpet of green.
Water striders flee.
A hush falls as
The great blue heron
Lifts its wide wings.
He beats the air from his
Driftwood perch.
A redwinged blackbird
Flashes red and yellow stripes
Among the elderberries.
Mrs. Mallard pecks at
Arrow Arum.
A Canada goose stands
On one foot in the shallows.
The current carries us
Ever onward
Toward the sea,
The light in our eyes.

Copyright 2015 Brenda Davis Harsham

Water Lily and lily pads

 

Note: I’ve been boating with the kids for three days straight. They took to stand-up paddle boarding. They might never canoe again.

Flying Carpet

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A yellow peony takes me
Flying through time
Back to another garden
Another day
In the hot sun
Footsore
Sweating
Hearing water trickle
From a waterwheel
Wanting to plunge into the river
Wanting shade
Wanting water
Wanting my mother.
At least I found shade.

Copyright 2015 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: Memories aren’t always cheerful. Sometimes they hurt. Have you ever had an X-ray guided cortisone shot? I had one in my shoulder today, and I’m the girl on fire. So in honor of my shoulder, and its temper tantrum, I watched Hunger Games. At least I’m not in danger of being eaten by wild dogs. Hope your weekend is wonderful. And this post is also my contribution to Poetry Friday, hosted this week at Buffy’s Blog.

A Pine Tree Wakes

Genesee River, Letchworth State Park, New York

When I wake from my long dreaming,
I first look up at the sky.
Far above me, magic dances in white clouds.
Mother Oak holds me fast, in her roots.
Poetry is the movement of her leaves.
Far below me, the river sings its longing for the sea.

Genesee River, Letchworth State Park, New York

Rivulets sink toward the secret aqueduct far below,
The dark, watery womb of all life.
Some droplets rise to adorn cloud castles.
Singing waters plunge over falls,
Scenting the embrace of Lake Ontario.
Flocks of starlings bank and turn.

Genesee River Falls, Letchworth State Park, New York

Wildflowers thirst, drink the spray,
And tremble on the cliffs.
The leaves feel the passing of the season,
As the water does not. As I do not.
We are constant, the water and the pine.
I hold fast to my cliff; I sink back into my dreams.

Genesee River, Letchworth State Park, New York

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: These photographs were taken at Letchworth State Park, where the Genesee River has carved a deep canyon in its headlong rush to join Lake Ontario, the Easternmost Great Lake, that lies between the US and Canada.

Flash Fiction: River Romance

Mallard Male and Female Ducks

The sun was setting, cherry blossoms perfumed the air, and Esme’s handsome boyfriend, Al, paddled at her side. His fine, green Mallard head feathers looked purple in the waning sunlight. She nibbled on bulrushes.

Sakura, Cherry Blossoms

Nosy daffodils crowded round taking selfies. You’d think it was an award ceremony.

Daffodils, river, fairy tale

Esme would let nothing lessen the magic of the evening. There on the riverfront, she and Al sipped water laden with tasty seeds. The silvery twilight faded, and fairies flickered like fireflies. Al offered Esme a tasty tuber under the Three Birches. She sighed with pleasure.

Birches on the river at sunset

Al raised his wings and drummed the water from happiness. Together they swam figures eights, intertwining their wakes, visible ripples of pleasure. Before Esme returned to her family’s nest on the far bank, her beak brushed Al’s farewell. A door had opened in her heart, perhaps Al would pass through one day.

sun sets on longings
solitary triangle of ripples
rushes bend in winds

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: This is my farewell haibun dedicated to Al, but it’s fictional, so I called it a flash fiction in the title. Al has run the weekly Haibun Thinking prompt, which sadly has ended. I hope you don’t mind me making free with your moniker, Al! I am a bit late with my entry, but I was preparing for and attending a writer’s conference. I have to scale back my blogging in May. I will be rewriting my children’s chapter book. Wish me luck! My plan is to blog in the evenings if I have any energy. 🙂

References:

http://diet.yukozimo.com/what-do-mallard-ducks-eat/
http://www.ask.com/question/what-do-mallard-ducks-eat

Silver Naiad Reflections

Birch by River Bend

Silver Birch,
Forever dancing,
Wet roots deep, holding fast,
Trunk curved
Toward the far bank,
Always gazing across the way.

Silver Naiad,
Still and thoughtful,
Wet feet, connected to earth,
Body curved
Toward the water,
Gazing always toward Olympus.

Note: This poem is dedicated to Line, a magical being, eyes ever upward, wings brushing our cheeks with joy.