WATER WORKS I and II – August 2017

Water Works I and II – By Don Knies

On Perch Lake, the dawn fog,

Sedentary, sits.

At a New York ocean beach,

The year’s first drowning hits.


Relaxed on the water at morn,

Bright and thick, the nine o’clock fog

Stirs, and touching none,

Floats south, ending its dance with the sun.


But wrenched by the tide

The city girl’s ride

To the ocean’s side

Turns suddenly west.

Drawing and clawing her body down

And around, five days hence, to be found

In the shallows of the bay,

A full ten miles away.


Still Perch Lake water by ten o’clock

Welcomes its swimmers from float and from dock:

This water, so calm, which elsewhere can rend,

Flout human intent, wrenching life to an end.