Thursday, August 26, 2010

Funny World

Thoughts While Washing the Car
[written in response to Thursday Think Tank Prompt #12:
Water at Poets United]

Out in the barn
this morning,
I filled the horse's bucket
with generous dollops;
made sure the dogs
have cool buckets waiting
for the heat of the day.
Now I'm washing the car.
This all involves
water -
a bucket for cleaning,
a hose for rinsing.
Later, I will shower.

How rarely do I think
about the magnificence
of this.
I turn on the tap.
It is there,
hot or cold.
I live in a place
rich with rivers,
with lakes and lagoons.

I often seek out
the sound of the river
to quiet my soul,
when this small city
feels too noisy,
too busy.
The salmon leap
in the autumn:
fish a-plenty
from this rushing
of all life.


An hour away,
give or take,
lies the ocean,
wave upon wave,
white-capped and rushing,
like white-maned horses,
in to shore.

On the other side
of the world,
lies the other side
of this story.

My sister,
with a vessel
on her head,
walks miles
for a bucket
of this water,
with which
she teaspoons out
for her children,
a scant
sip at a time.

Some Mayan women
trying to reclaim
a desert,
came to meet us,
showing us photos
of how,
with tin cans
of precious water
they so carefully
poured each trickle
on the roots of tiny saplings
in parched, cracked earth.

Traveling here
they passed
all the lakes
and rivers
and waterfalls
all the way
the highway.
They marvelled
at so much water
our wealth,
the ease
with which
the basics of our living
come to hand.

A child asked them,
"Is there anything
you want to ask us?"
They said,
it's this:
Why do North Americans
complain so much?"
and I felt my shame
like a slap,
like a hiss.

Where is the fairness
in a world like this?


  1. ah it's true - we can be so unthankful..your poem is beautiful - that must be a superb place to live...

  2. You are sooo right. Water freely available in some parts of the world are not available elsewhere. We take so much for granted.

  3. Remember I said this Sherry -
    When life is easy, one complains. It's like talking about the weather.

    When the going gets tough, and tougher - one prays. And sees beauty and the work of God in everything.

  4. This is insightful and poignant, Sherry! We are rich in so much that matters...plentiful water, abundant food, the freedom to live our lives...yet we always seem to be scrambling for MORE!

    Thanks for the reminder of how truly fortunate we are...


  5. So much wisdom....I love "when the going gets tough, one prays". Yes. Thank you, everyone!:)

  6. A wonderful and insightful piece! Too true, that we take so much for granted. =)


  7. Sherry Blue Sky,
    I can relate very well to your words. I live in an area of England, where we have had a poor summer, with lots of rain. But strangel, we have also had a ban on using garden hose pipes in our gardens!
    A bizzare awareness of the lack of water.....and lack of foresight to conserve it.
    Excellent Poetry Prompt.
    Best wishes, Eileen

  8. Freshwater resources are dwindling. This is a wake-up call. Well written.

  9. This is a great reminder of our natural resource. We don't realize how fortunate we truly are. This saddens me; You can see this daily in the news in photos, so much suffering! Why can't the basics of life, be available for all. Isn't it
    humanity, that should come first... I don't understand the governing of countries. We as a world, not working together for the better cause!
    Thanks Sherry for the reminder of
    what should be~ Your sentiment is lovely! xXx

  10. Definitely words to always thanks for sharing your wisdom.

  11. I love it when poets hone in and speak of things many never even think of. This is a beautitul piece of well needed politics.


  12. "Why do North Americans
    complain so much?" haha- quote of the year.



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