floating on screams, never did a star fall so far …

by John Reinhart

floating on screams

the river doesn’t scream
unless you listen,
stick your head under
the white tipped foam
flying over ribs the water
wears down imperceptibly

hear the heartbeat slow
as your own quickens
and the elemental soul detaches
slowly from the womb

silence sighs,
shaking hands with water’s
gasps, an acknowledgment
that dry riverbeds
will fill with tears
again
and the blood spent
on desolate banks
will breathe deeply,
walk and swim

never did a star fall so far that it could not find its reflection in the sea

the story is telling –
about the man
who crawled ashore remarking
in wonder at the light;

how in intricate maneuvers
he divided his cells into a
prosperous and well-regarded
family, a humble nucleus,

yet became the center
of a headlines-big gambling scandal,
losing everything to a thief
called life

and still the scourge did not abate,
reporters hounding like antibodies
preying on simplicity as if
it were a sin –

lamenting all, he never broke,
calling on humanity deeper than fate
at the warmth of a single imagined
candle in the dark –

prostrate on the ground
as lilies grew from his tears,
the doors opened and time stopped
twitching –

the stars shone a little brighter
to mirror a brushfire;
the earth breathed more lightly,
innocent of tomorrow

and there at the shores
of the tideless sea,
he lay down his questions
no more torturing them with answers

An arsonist by trade, John Reinhart lives on a farmlette in Colorado with his wife and children. He is a frequent contributor to the Songs of Eretz Review and his chapbook, “encircled,” is out from Prolific Press. More of his work is available at Patreon and Facebook.

Image credit: Starry Night Over the Rhone by Vincent Van Gogh

floating on screams never did a star fall so far