Water is H2O, hydrogen two parts, oxygen one, but there is also a third thing that makes water,
and nobody knows what that is.

–D. H. Lawrence



Thursday, January 24, 2013

water




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I was born in a drought year. That summer
my mother waited in the house, enclosed
in the sun and the dry ceaseless wind,
for the men to come back in the evenings,
bringing water from a distant spring.
Veins of leaves ran dry, roots shrank.

And all my life I have dreaded the return
of that year, sure that it still is
somewhere, like a dead enemy's soul. 

Fear of dust in my mouth is always with me,
and I am the faithful husband of the rain,
I love the water of wells and springs
and the taste of roofs in the water of cisterns.

I am a dry man whose thirst is praise
of clouds, and whose mind is something of a cup.
My sweetness is to wake in the night
after days of dry heat, hearing the rain.


Wendell Berry




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