The River Singing Stone
Myrna Pena-Reyes

Through brush and over boulders
we followed the sound of water
hidden in trees.
The natives we met on the narrow trails
carrying chickens and bananas
to sell in the city answered,
“the waterfall? — not too far,
after the next hill.”
We walked to he hill, and the next,
and the next.

You were annoyed.
You had said you would find it easily,
having gone there often in your youth.

We stopped counting the hours,
kilometers we walked uphill and down,
forward and back, pursuing that sound.
We couldn’t just follow the river –
there were boulders, thickets, cliffs,
and we, no longer young.

Winded and sweaty, we rested.
Such trickery – was it near,
did we hear the roar of the falls,
or just the sound of water
pounding rocks into pebbles,
grinding gravel into sand?

But it was late.
We had to go home.
We listened
to the river singing,
the river singing stone.

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