rivers

by Daisy Syme-Taylor

And I remembered, then, the cruel significance
of the water around my ankles, my submerged feet;
the water was clear but distorted. I could see the stones,
each rock, each mineral formed at different times in
Earth’s long and dark history. It was as if
I had pushed my face under and opened my eyes
and let the weird silence of being below the surface
force its way through.

The paperback lay open on the bank, the corners
of the pages dampened, turned by damp hands.
We joked and laughed and threatened to push each other
over the edge, through steady perpetuum mobile
of the high screen of reeds, crashing though,
still laughing, to see where the fishes swam
and hid.