Saturday, January 30, 2010

The River of January

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The River of January


How wonderful it must have been
to find a river in January, when
they were hot, and they
were experiencing explorer’s
despair at the start of the 16th
century, and people who
lived there and had
already found the river looked
at them as if they too, had
been discovered already.

Probably I won’t find a river.
Are there any left to find?
I could find one already found
and rename it, except I might
be tempted to name it the
River of January, and that
wouldn’t do. So I’ll put on
a carnival hat in the Northern
Hemisphere, turn a faucet
on and off, and think of Rio
De Janeiro, flowing there
below its continent’s leading
edge, which tips toward
ocean and Africa. Promises
to oneself are easy to make,

especially when one’s wearing
a carnival hat. I promise myself
that one day I’ll fly to the River
of January, and look at it. And just
look at it and say, Rio De Janeiro.


Copyright 2009 Hans Ostrom
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