Dazzling, even under glass, the sky’s blue plate special shimmers
up from the creek bed, enticing a lunchtime crowd of floaters and fly-by-nights
to make their rest stop here. Lost in reflection, a pair of rocks idle in the shallows, undisturbed
by the honking and jostling as the ducks file downstream, dodging the water’s bones
as easily as bedroom slippers
navigate the dark.

This is what I do not understand: how all this happens
without an answer. Without, even, a question.

The Wissahickon spills endlessly, like the night love poured through me, nearly, I thought,
uncontainable as it rushed from my fingers and out the window into people passing on the street,
over fire hydrants, pigeons, and boom boxes, through police cars, stop signs, and cockroaches,
between two dogs circling in heat. I did not need an answer then.
I would have understood the indifferent delight of the ducks. But I asked,
and my question scattered like mercury, into a million trembling globules
magnetic with yearning.

Copyright 2002 by Deidra Greenleaf Allan
Posted by kind permission of the poet.

Photo by Patrice Audet