By a Stream in the Upper Part of So. Carolina

The feel that flowing water sifts across
The toes or down a throat is good, though cold.
We bend to see a face retold with loss
On golden waves and there, the stones below:
All smoothed by years, not wrinkled like our skin.
A stone refuses death. The water spun
From mountain tops, the mud formed in the spin,
Are old. But we, with souls alive and young
Are lulled to dreams by this slow, murmured song.
A lullaby that rocks a soul in deep
Embrace. These stones could not resist for long
For rushing water rushes all to sleep.
The stream reveals in time with whom we flirt,
Then, grain on grain the stone becomes the dirt.

Reprinted from Yemassee Spring/Summer, 1995.