eagles in the tree
herons lurch into flight, dragging
their long legs behind
kingfishers swoop low over the water
mats of olive-brown weed tangle my paddle
lap and slap of water on my bow
dribbles of weed-smelling water soak my jeans
slipping through the marshy islets
a brown water snake whips past me
turtles as big as pot lids sun on a log —
how close can we get?
sunshine casts diamond sparkles on the water
clouds turn it steel gray
we slip among the trunks of long dead trees
what is underneath us?
an old farm, flooded?
a little town, forgotten?
we drift across the surface
as if we’re traveling across the sky