This poem began in a coffee shop as a simple writing exercise, where I turn on Spotify, find an instrumental song that I enjoy and just, go. I like to start most of my writing sessions this way; It rattles the pipes clean and helps satisfy my chronic procrastination. I don’t necessarily start on my determined project of the day right then and there, but I’m still being productive, and whatever unrelated stories are trying to express themselves get their voices heard.
First Find Water became an unexpected pleasure and much longer project to work on. Rewrites and reflection revealed a character processing an empty world devastated by climate change, where she must find the basics we look for when attempting to survive.
“I advise you to prepare for the worst”
She is small, and ever walking
Her turns, are sharp as elbows
And each heart beat finds its palpitation
River, river. You used to run and have life follow
Fleet and footed she moves through mountains
With shadowed stories, books remembered
Some scribbles on the margins
She thinks that children were once here
There is wood, but dried. Brittle.
Bricks are made to be caskets
But the skin has thickened, is it’s own shelter now
“Be resilient, find others”
She goes forth over terrain and realities
Trusting in blood to warm her
The nighttime skies are opened up, now
plentiful in every direction.
Voices land, and bounce
Move through stunted tree lines
I have watched you make and carve
Faces below the ash
Those who were your sisters.
She dreams of too many mosquitoes,
explosions in the night turned day turned loudness
Flags and posturing Strangers, sour waters;
She will turn them all primordial