After Dam Decommissioning

Jun 14, 2016 by

I remember
resting in wooden chairs
while vain trees primp in your reflection

I remember
paddling your smooth turquoise waters
and frisky mergansers, feasting on shallow trout

I remember
anticipating the ospreys’ return each spring
and soaring eagles above Douglas fir tree tops

I remember
swinging from your steep bank
and plunging into your icy depths

I remember
seeking refuge in your silent stillness.

But one October morning
one hundred years of tranquility
shifted into magnificent motion.

We watched you drain
and take the earth with you.

We watched your layered bottom, powerful concrete lava,
head-cut up the river, building a canyon.

Once again, trees sway eighty feet above unleashed water
Once again, glorious torrents replace quiet pools.
Once again, salmon, white with experience, spawn in your sediment
Once again, the Yakima people dip nets at Husum

Once again, you are free.
Still
I remember you.

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