by Renée Orleans-Lindsay

engraved earth, snug against the coursing flow
its pattern endures through shine and snow
woven through the grassland, scarcely letting go

serpentine, carving the land
curved and creased like the palm of a hand
whittling trees and roads and sand

breathing, brimming with vitality and the lifeblood
yet liberating itself with an unfettered flood
from its source all life may cease, or bud.