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The River

Updated: Oct 25, 2022

You were part of my childhood memories. The good ones. Like freshly chilled hose water after running under the summer sun. Your feet on the hot concrete and gravel where you could feel, hell you could see the heat on the horizon then sharp cold taste that was, and still is, as good or better than any bottle of water you’ve ever cracked. Envious of the childhood memories. Envious of the time I spent wishing I was with you growing up.

You were part of my childhood. You were part of many people’s. Darling to most, bitch to some. I’d never would have guessed I’d move away and still be dreaming of you day to day. It didn’t hit me until I would see others. Swim in them, play in them, wish they were you. Bigger, holding more water or boats, a greater waterfall, none of it mattered to me. They weren’t you.

Most people pronounce your name wrong the first go. Most people don’t know your secret spots. Swimming holes, fishing holes, smooth rock to lay on, beaches to sit on, waterfalls casting rainbows over to the trails, and rope swings tucked in almost every corner. Most people who got to know you didn’t know you as I would.

Fuck, I’ve seen other rivers. I’ve swam in them, lived on them, used their water, and ate the fruit that grew on their shores. They were never you. Across the country, I’ve even traveled to see them just to be awed, not by their beauty, but by the underestimation I had given you my whole life. You weren’t the clearest, coldest, or most plentiful in any way. Yet, you were in the top few percent of any positive category. River rocks and life overturned. A source of life for all who know you. I wish to be home on the river. River take me home.

She moves like a wave in the wind.

Every single thought like a rapid in the winter.

Every memory like swimming holes in the summer.

Trying to swim through but water fills up my lung.

Every reach to a passing rock is the last breath gone away.

Never to swim again I’m ready to drown, I’m done.

I treated you like it was part of growing up.

I treated you well but always wishing it was better.

Slow and steady washing over me.

I try but I can’t get out of here, what-fucking-ever.

Shoes made of iron to scape me off the ceiling.

Try as I might they don’t let me swim.

But I’d sink to the bottom just for that feeling.

Your love flows like the memories of the river.

Driving through my hometown just to see her.

Different people call you by different names,

In the end, they all mean the same.

Winding through my mind with a soft spot in my heart.

Each flash of your face follows with a living work of art.

Cold crystal clear water running in from the creek.

Deer run up her banks as a tear runs down my cheek.

It’s been so long since I ever had to try.

It’s been even longer since I had a good cry.

She read my mind without missing a paragraph

She could find me when I didn’t know where I was at

Started with a long hi,

and ended with a short goodbye...

With the seasons she rises and falls.

But the river tries to be equal to all.

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