A flowing river has no home, only a birthing where small rivulets emerge from the ground then join with others on a slow journey to an end where the river waters inevitably combine with all the waters of the world.

In between, along its journey, it flows and searches, seeking a place to rest.

There, under the willow whose branches and leaves trail their fingers on its surface as a lover’s gentle touch on the skin of the beloved, birds sing a welcome to the river. “Stop! Rest! Here is the place your searching ends. Here you will find peace.”

Solemn-eyed deer gaze at the slow passage of water’s time, while kingfishers flit from side to side as their “chit-chit-chit” echoes through the air. By sundown, as the river is tucked into its bed by a blanket of fog, green frog and brown cicada add their voices to the night’s symphony which continues unabated until the new dawn arises. Daylight silences night’s voices, making way for morning’s wake-up call of robin, blackbird, and wren. Overhead a blue-gray heron lifts through the mist into the sky.

Under warmth of sun by day and guidance of constellations at night, the constancy of the heavens lends a peace, a fullness to the river’s quest.  Still, the river flows.

Oft times children come laughing and playing to accompany the river on its journey. Stones skip like laughter across the water’s surface while Pooh Sticks race under bridges. Encouraged by the excitement of children’s voices, leaf boats launch with anticipation then come to rest at water’s edge, lost in the tangle of overhanging vines. New leaf-battalions are launched to take their place; the river continues.

For a time, gentle ripples and bubbling cascades are the river’s answering conversation of joy to the children. Elusive rainbows fill the air as sunlight dapples on the surface and the children squeal with awe. Inevitably, exhausted by innocent wonder, the children pull themselves from river’s edge and depart for home, satisfied with the day, happy to be home.

But the river has no home and flows on.

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    3 years ago

    Sad to think that the river has no home, but so beautiful that it provides a myriad of homes for the rest of us. This is beautifully written – a journey, an allegory, and a weaving of stories. I could almost imagine you writing different stories or poems all tied together by the river which just keeps flowing along.

    Eric Radcliffe
    Eric Radcliffe(@eric-radcliffe)
    2 years ago

    Hi Susan, you have quiet confidence in the way you describe the river/s, and use a multitude of beautiful descriptions in telling your story. I too, like Juma, would like to see you maybe tell another different expression of how you see the river, perhaps how she lays out her gifts in lakes, large and small. You have the imagination for this. Thank you for sharing your gift of writing – Eric.

    Carrie OLeary
    Carrie OLeary(@carrie-oleary)
    2 years ago

    Lovely descriptions of nature ‘observed’ by the river as it flows along. We have a small river close to where we live, with a bridge where many a child has delightedly played Pooh Sticks and splashed about in the water during hot summer days.

    Lotchie Carmelo
    Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
    2 years ago

    It is the best description of a river and its journey. But I am sad that the river has no home. I love how you told us this story, Susan, it is like I am reading a story and poem in one. Great title. Great story. Good job.

    Lotchie Carmelo
    Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
    Reply to  Susan Giles
    2 years ago

    You’re most welcome. Your story is worth reading.

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