River Tidings

by Brian Evans-Jones

No rain here the clouds
thicken but keep
mum and if not quite
still then at least
demure. No rain
though the air’s charged
with water
this morning’s fog
wet still on skin and clinging
into the soft
lining of
lungs.
         But at the falls
the river
rockets over
the dam: a long, loud
shout
of upstream
torrent, flood printed
white onto
the black
dam wall. Thick
fast white, churned
with trouble 24hour
emergency broadcast,
layered, panicked,
tumbling over
itself.
         And in the rapids,
appalled whitefaced
water crowds
pushing forward, fretting back,
turning
the big news
over and over.