Today's poem is by Lawrence Revard

Missouri River
        for C. M.

When it calls, I'm never home. It leaves
            cryptic messages. I play them
over and over, calling them rainy days. I visit.
            It noses between the railroad
towns, elbows aside boat ramps and silos.
            It snarls, like pectoral
muscles, hold big barges in their clefts.

            Inside it is always blind.
The blind hope to make out a stone face—
            no, a mud bed in silt sheets.
I sigh and know its arms are spread.
            The blackbirds lie here.
The snakes make clay coils on the rock.

We are not close. Not that kind of friendship.
            It would stuff catfish
in my eye sockets and break my leg twice.
            A violent antagonist.
Villain thought dead comes back to fight.
            Its body absorbs bullets,
not to mention suicides, with a glug, glug.

            Inside it is ashamed.
A pack-rat and a sentimental slob,
            it never gets the girl.
Instead of a heart-throb, it's a steady
            pulse. Not a guitar,
but a banjo plucks out its solo.

Copyright © 2004 Lawrence Revard All rights reserved
from Smartish Pace
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

Support Verse Daily
Sponsor Verse Daily!

Home    Archives   Web Monthly Features    About Verse Daily   FAQs  Submit to Verse Daily   Publications Noted & Received  

Copyright © 2002, 2003 Verse Daily All Rights Reserved