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Friday, January 12, 2018

The Weight of Water

The wind whispers secrets soon to
be revealed.  Pushes him along.
There is no cure.
He shuffles. Small steps. Unsure
for the first time
in forever
whether he can make the hill.

Pail in hand, he bends, turns
the spigot, spends 
precious minutes.
Watches water fall. Rinses
out the larvae and the slime.
Fills the pail and after
a time convinces himself to stand.

Physics is cruel. And a body at
rest remains. He moves forward.
Pours water for the cats,
seed for the birds, feed for the possums
and raccoons. Corn for the deer.
Meat for the dogs.

They need. They all need to live, he says.
Everything is creation or calamity
and he the only thing between the two.
What will they do when he is gone?

It is hunger that drives him
though he does not eat. He is shrinking
and I think he may shrink into the earth
when his credits and balances are due.

He is winded, his time near its end.
He passes me the pail. I bend.
Turn the spigot.     Water falls.

~ Elodie Pritchartt
March 9, 2012

1 comment:

  1. I love the phrase "He is shrinking and I think he may shrink into the earth....."

    Your writing is very visual. I see the old man being pushed by the wind and realizing that there is no cure for aging, growing old.

    I relate to this poem because I see my 99 year old mother much like the old man in your poem. I take care of her and I have seen her decline, physically and mentally. I see her in her face the real understanding of the uncertainty of life.

    Thanks for your beautiful words!