This poem slipped on the muddy bank
and plunged into icy water, shock of
unimagined depth, involuntary gasp
and bob-up and size-up and sweep-
down; this is how it feels to be caught
in the current, wave-trains, hay-stacks,
hydraulics, big drops, the exhilaration
of gravity and flow and the struggle
to keep your head up, to keep your head;
horizon line, falling, smashing on rocks.
Love gathers in high places, flows ever
downstream, tumbles, joins and settles,
or vaporizes, no longer a river, only mist;
and you on the bank, long-necked bird.