River dream

I cannot say, Child, what you might be experiencing within, but I can tell you I dreamed
that we were sailing along a river with green overhanging boughs
and that the waters before us were only troubled by a succession
of indentations made by tiny feet running rapidly across
—a little Jesus lizard, there in the recesses, trying to catch
or, on second thought, cavorting with, a dragonfly which shimmered and skimmered
away just as the swan drifted into view, its white feathers transforming as it neared,
changing from white to gold flushed with crimson
and then the eagle, gliding low over the glimmering water, huge, like life itself,
its curved yellow beak closed, its sharp eye affixed on us, not on the hunt,
merely acknowledging our presence
and so we drifted on and I didn’t even realize until the shore loomed
before us, rocky and steep, that we’d been riding in a little wooden boat
that navigated the river by its own power, not ours, to land us
right where we needed to be, and that we’d be able to navigate
this embankment, too, for there amid the stones and earth were steps
perfectly placed for our climb.

Cincinnati – Spring Grove Cemetery & Arboretum ‘An Unreal Moment, and a Gift.’David Paul Ohmer CC BY 2.0.

with thanks to the Two Writing Teachers community
for the place to share Slices of Life
even when they are but dreams

5 thoughts on “River dream

  1. I love how your writing flits and flows from one thought into another just like a dream. There are so many vivid descriptions and if dreams were symbolic, this one would be interesting to dissect. Then again, the ethereal visions stand beautifully on their own, and were a pleasure to read.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This sounds like you captured it immediately upon awakening, for how else do we remember our dreams? So vivid, so full of animal and nature spirit–your birds are still with you, strong in this dream. Will you write any more on this, parsing out interpretation? Or just leave it be, the scenes enough to feed the soul?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Fran, those dreams are free gifts of stories and experiences that must be told, and must be written immediately on waking, lest we forget. When I used to take Melatonin I understood for the first time ever how horror writers come up with stuff. But you, in this piece, must have been at complete peace to have such a beautiful experience, slow realizations that can apply so well to life. A Jesus lizard. What a fun boat to be in!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Your poem is other-worldly and dream-like, carried perfectly by your rhythmn and enjambment choices. I loved the serenity of the image of the swan, then the contrast of the eagle “huge,like life itself “. A beautiful poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I guess only in a dream could you have a dragon fly, a swan, a Jesus lizard and a self-propelled boat in one body of water. I remember showing a National Geographic rainforest video that featured slow motion footage of a Jesus lizard padding across the surface of a river. It was almost dreamlike.
    Your first line is so beautiful. It reminds me of a favorite picture book, Mis Berlin Walks, by Yolen.

    Liked by 1 person

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