River road by Jan Haag
Without thinking, I steer toward it,
needing to see that swath of strength
making its way through the artery of Delta
to the sea.
I always find you there.
Under a blue-sky June dome I travel back
decades to a time capsule once anchored
hard by this river where you waited for me.
When the car dead ends into the levee road,
faith stretches a long lazy arm before me,
cobalt calm on the surface,
turbulence churning below. I pause,
knowing that to turn left and follow
the road south, crossing one bridge,
then another, I could reach that sweet spot
where we found communion
far from the world.
You are not there, but I carry us always.
So I turn right, tuck you back
into my heartspace, trusting
the undulation of asphalt before me,
of young peaches ripening
at the bottom of the levee on my right
and the perpetual river on my left
to carry me home.
Jan Haag taught writing as a journalism/creative writing professor in Sacramento, California, for more than three decades. Now retired, she hosts writing workshops using the Amherst Writers & Artists method and is the editor of AWA Press. She is the author of a poetry collection, “Companion Spirit,” and she has had stories and poems published in many anthologies and literary journals.