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December on the Eel 

Here,

Moored by the soft calling turns
Of a river now purposed by rain,
We can linger in that patient lapse
Between the miseries of drought
And the sudden electricity of flood.

The Chinook-crazed bankies
Hunker in closet cigarettes
Debating spoon and roe,
While the Copenhagen sages of Weymouth
Share chit chat smiles of angst,
And the oared helmsmen at High Rock,
Ply the wide waters
Revealed in the nervous dawn light.

And a distant figure
Heaves arcing bright lines
Through shadowy secret boils
And long greasy slicks
In their far-fetched reverie
Of feathered hopes.

This is long removed
From the life-gone-easy days of,
Say, June, the routines of August,
Or the sudden spell cast by afternoon light
Through an April window
Reminding us all things
Eventually come back to this time.

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Sam A. Flanagan

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