the madrigal, volume iii.v
by jennifer redmond
she said from the riverbank.
a river rock.
Her hair, riotous green moss
wet and sparkling
her face indurate.
I live here now, go home
I like being in the flow
like the splashing
like the cold
like the phosphorescent moon
glistening on the rapids
Go! go on your way, find your own body of water.
I will rest here
to the thrum of the maelstrom
and the surge of the torrent,
there is so much to see and do.
Don’t stand there in the river like some Charybdis
Get on your way, find your own flow
and watch out for the undertow
I am happy here,
the reeds entertain me
and the other stones are company.
It suits my humour –
the quiet gloom of the shallows.
Her words rose like bubbles on the surface,
They pooled and frothed in gyres
and were gone.
What if the river floods?
I said in anguish
You always think the worst, she said
her features washed away by the deluge
mossy hair fanned out,
fronds waving soothing
more rock than mother.
If that happens, I’ll have a time like no other
might even end up in the ocean.
My tears tumbled down increasing the disgorge
swept away, unheeded in the spray
and somehow adding to the load
for she became dislodged
and sunk to the silty bottom.
I breached the surface and descended to her world
The spirits of the water swarmed around
Hauled me through their sluice to the break.
Gasping later on the sodden bank
I called a final time
White water beating on my heart.
Jennifer Redmond is an artist and writer from Cork in Ireland. She contributes regularly to The Visual Artists New-sheet in which she reviews and critiques exhibitions, and new art writing. Her interests lie in experimental , short and hybrid forms of literature. She is interested in collaborative projects involving word, moving image and sound.