this drought year you’re a torrent over the falls

or you’re nothing at all

so dependent on the rain fall

but it doesn’t matter


i’ve noticed how many are happy when they’re here

dogs and kids scampering

couples conked out on your lawns napping

i like to hit your beer garden

sit on the steps and be with it

then i take a walk

i step down all the steps

to your creek and walk along in the lush green

still lush even though the creek is drying up again

all the accents from all over america

and languages from all over the world

i hear being spoken as i’m walking


one day you’re dry

not rapid water, not minnehaha

just a limestone cliff

and creek just slow

ever shrinking puddles

full of crawdads and minnows

trying to make it through


a few more days then thunderstorms

followed by soaking rains

and look how you change

roaring now

cooled from the falls

once more all the way down to the Mississippi

on a hot fall day

a blue heron stalks silently through your flows

ducks dutifully straining

their beaks snipping and snapping

right where you disappear

into the big river

where people bring something to sit on

and start fishing

once more kids playing in your currents

like it doesn’t matter

like nothing

no language is in their way