The National Catholic Review
Charlotte Muse

On the bank where it pours clear over freckled stones,
I want to sit and watch a leaf riding the surface,
a fish patrolling the water road
downstream through sun glint and flash of froth,
on through the river of light
river of water
river of light

And I’ll plunge in,
trusting the river which is not trustworthy,
to be carried on its back,
giving up my own motion to look at the unrolling sky,
then turning like a log to stare down
until I or the river
lets go

Already I’m dissolving in the world.
There’s my death,
cawing from a leafless branch
and waiting for me to make a move
it wants to notice.

If you crush me against rocks
or force me to breathe like a fish
I forgive you, river. I loved you anyway,
let me say that. If anything could teach me
to forgive what kills me,
it would be you.

Charlotte Muse lives in Menlo Park, Calif., where she teaches poetry and tutors Hispanic children in reading. Her chapbook, A Story Also Grows, is forthcoming from Main Street Rag Publishing Company, online. This poem is 2

Comments

Kathy Pesta | 7/1/2009 - 10:54pm

This is a beautiful poem.  Thank you. "If anything could teach me /to forgive what kills me/it would be you."  A line to commit to memory!

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